Sotheby's Integrates Contemporary Latin American Art


The art market is changing in regards to Latin American art.

For decades, Latin American art has been marginalized by art historians, auction houses, and museums, and prices for Latin American art have reflected this. However, with an upsurge in demand for Latin American art, from both the public and private collectors, the sub genre has begun to move into the mainstream.

Sotheby’s Introduces Latin American art into its Contemporary Art Auction

courtesy of Sotheby's 

courtesy of Sotheby's 

This Fall, Sotheby’s has decided to integrate its contemporary Latin American art auction, into its contemporary art auction in New York. From now on, contemporary Latin American art will be featured in the larger contemporary art umbrella (up until this point, this umbrella consisted mostly of American and European art). This is a major shift in the art world and will undoubtedly increase the prices and prestige of Latin American contemporary art. 

1979 was the year that contemporary Latin American art was introduced to the major auction houses such as Sotheby’s and Christies; and for decades, Latin American art has been excluded from major contemporary art shows at the world’s most renowned museums.  

Increased Appreciation for Latin Art around the World

Recently however, Latin art has shown alongside major American and European works.  For example, the recent show for Pablo Picasso and Diego Rivera, Picasso & Rivera: Conversations Across Time has drawn international attention, and in the process, has exposed Diego Rivera’s importance in the evolution of cubism and modern art. 


The Getty Foundation has funded Pacific Standard Time: LA/LA, the MoMA has recently created an institute for the study of Latin American art, and works by Frida Kahlo, Diego Rivera, and Basquiat have reached record prices in the past few years.

The decision by Sotheby’s to include Latin American art in its contemporary art auction both reflects and helps establish the trend of increased demand and appreciation for Latin American art around the world.