UBS’s president of wealth management Jürg Zeltner agreed that art is still a relatively attractive investment as long as interest rates are low.
“I don't know if art is an asset class,” he said. “What I do know is that money is worth less due to central bank interventions. And it does look to me that a lot of private investors are also looking to invest money in art. They have a passion for it, and if you see the thousands of clients we bring to this platform, you can see that this is a trend here to stay.”
Art Basel’s global director Marc Spiegler said more than 90 Netjets flights were scheduled to land at Basel’s EuroAirport this week, despite what he called politically and economically “volatile times.”
“It’s a time where it becomes harder for many galleries to work through and continue to support their artists,” Spiegler said. “Our role this week is to help our galleries succeed, to help them find new patrons from all over the world.”
Many among Art Basel in Basel’s 291 galleries from 35 countries that are exhibiting this week commented on just how global that crowd of patrons has become. Hauser & Wirth
partner Marc Payot said he had seen a rise in Chinese and Japanese collectors.
“Even more now, Basel is the fair where, internationally, curators and collectors really come,” he said.