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Who are the best-selling artists in the world in 2022?
Artstyle 03 Jan 2023

Who are the best-selling artists in the world in 2022?

The art market always has surprises in store, but it’s also marked by long-term trends. These collector trends are useful indicators of an artist’s market value. The year 2022 has been marked by spectacular sales records, the return in force of art fairs and the unexpected success of new talents. Wondering who the best-selling artists in the world are in 2022? With nearly 10 years of expertise in art sales and a network of 700,000 monthly visitors on its site, the marketplace Artsper is ready to let you in on their best-selling artists of 2022. Take off immediately for a tour of the best-selling artists by country on Artsper!

best-selling artists in the world in 2022 artsper
The best-selling artists in the world in 2022 on Artsper © Artsper

Masters of street art dominate the streets – and sales!

The most famous street artists have the wind in their sails. This is the case on Artsper, with the artist Shepard Fairey (Obey) who holds the record for the number of works sold in many countries, such as France and the United States. Although he is not the best-selling artist in all Western countries, he is generally in the top 5, which confirms his global influence.

Generally, street art continues its progression on the art market. Banksy frequently breaks sales records, but he’s not the only one who’s made his mark. For example, the New York graffiti icon Kaws made it into the top 10 most expensive auctions in 2019. JR and Richard Orlinski are also among the most popular names in 2022, both on Artsper and around the world.

In Europe, M.Chat and Miss.Tic also drove a record number of sales during the year on the platform, as proof of the strong interest from collectors. Are you an urban art lover? Discover the ten most famous pieces of street art in the world!

JR palazzo farnese artsper
JR, Punto di fuga, Palazzo Farnese in Roma, Italy © Artsper

Peaks linked to major news in the art world

Several events can have a direct impact on an artist’s price. For example, the death of a well-known name usually leads to a sales boom as collectors anticipate a return on their investment.

The year 2022 was marked by some sad news in the art world. Greek artist Alekos Fassianos, who specialized in figurative paintings with mythological influences, passed away in April. As a result his artworks sold out very quickly. What’s more, Fassianos was the best-selling artist on Artsper in Sweden this year. Similarly, the deaths of Miss.Tic and Pierre Soulages were followed by an exponential growth in sales.

death of soulages 2022
Pierre Soulages in front of one of his works © Fred Dugit / Maxppp, photograph published on Franceinfo

On a more positive note, large retrospectives or museum exhibitions are also drivers of sales peaks. Artsper observed it at the end of 2022 with Françoise Pétrovitch. The number of her sales increased at the exact same moment that her dedicated exhibition started at the BnF in Paris. We noticed the same scenario with Philippe Geluck, who is the best-selling artist of the year in Switzerland. Since February 2022, twenty monumental bronze sculptures of Geluck’s famous Cat are exhibited near to the Leman Lake in Geneva, Switzerland. This perfectly-located event undoubtedly contributed to the local popularity of the artist.

Françoise Pétrovitch best-selling artist france
Poster of the exhibition © BnF François Mitterand in Paris, France

The impact of auctions

Auctions also saw twists and turns in 2022. For example, the sales of both Ernie Barnes and Kerry James Marshall artworks achieved prices largely above the estimates. This is just the beginning of the overdue recognition of Black artists in the market.

Japanese artist Yayoi Kusama also met successes in auction houses and museums. Her Infinity Rooms installations are flourishing around the globe. Moreover, she hit a new world record with the sale of Untitled (Nets) (1959) in May 2022 by Phillips for $10.5 million.

To anticipate next year’s record-breaking sales, take a sneak peek at the most anticipated events on the art scene in 2023.

Significant local trends

As illustrated by our map of the best-selling artists in 2022, the art market can lean patriotic. For example, the street artist Clet Abraham operates especially in Italian cities. On Artsper, Abraham is the top-selling artist in Italy, whereas that’s not the case in the other European countries! In the same way, the artist Miss.Tic was particularly researched in France, as her popularity was higher in the French market.

best-selling artists clet abraham
A work by Clet Abraham in Florence © Clet Abraham, photograph published on lepoint.fr

While Chinese artists such as Ai Weiwei, Yan Pei-Ming and Liu Bolin are now international bestsellers, they all started with a national audience. That’s why the best-selling artist in China on Artsper is the Chinese artist Li Lihong. Note that his popularity increased progressively at a larger scale and he’s already well-known in other countries too.

Aboriginal art has also been in the spotlight in recent years. Not surprisingly, it is an Aboriginal artist occasionally exhibited on Artsper, Isabelle Mali, who was the best-selling artist in Australia on Artsper in 2022.

Aboriginal art Artsper
Example of an Aboriginal artwork : Veronica Williams Napangardi, Ngapa Jukurrpa (Water Dreaming) – Pirlinyarnu, 2021, available on Artsper

A promising year in 2023

Of course, the great masters of modern and contemporary art will always dominate the top sales. Icons like Victor Vasarely and Egon Schiele are scattered across our map. But emerging artists also caught the art market’s attention, whether on Artsper or elsewhere. Street art is doing well, and 2023 promises to be another successful year for the genre. Major events in the art world, such as deaths or exhibitions, will remain boosters of sales. Take the opportunity to make your assumptions for the year to come… And to help you with your research, the Artsper experts have compiled a list of 23 artists who will make their mark in 2023!

About Artsper

About Artsper

Founded in 2013, Artsper is an online marketplace for contemporary art. Partnering with 1,800 professional art galleries around the world, it makes discovering and acquiring art accessible to all.

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