Artist Pension Trust Plans Fifty Million Dollar Contemporary Art Selloff

The Artist Pension Trust (APT) which holds the biggest global collection of contemporary art has announced that they are to sell off half their collection this autumn. The collection was started 10 years ago and has amassed over 10,000 works by 1,600 artists from 75 different countries. The APT works are valued at 100 million dollars, set up as a form of pension investment fund. The sale is expected to raise a 40% return for the artists involved in the scheme, approximately $50m.

The Artist Pension Trust (APT) is the first investment program dedicated to the interests of emerging and mid-career artists. APT’s long-term financial planning services allow artists to invest their artworks alongside a community of select artists, thereby providing a uniquely diversified, alternative income stream. Our vision is to build an integrated financial services firm that caters to the financial needs of the artist.

APT is the first investment opportunity created specifically to provide emerging and mid-career artists with a long-term financial planning program. Eight APTs, comprised of up to 250 artists each, have been formed and developed in major art centers around the world. Each APT is a sum of individual collections within one larger collection. It is our objective to assist the artist in building a proprietary collection of his/her artworks within the context of the APT collection. Each APT Director will dedicate time and experience to this objective, drawing on the traditional structure of mutual assurance societies. Integrity, accountability, and quality are the values that define APT’s commitment to the artist. Each APT is distinct and independent and together they form an integrated, worldwide network.

How APT Works: APT is a long-term investment planning program. Rather than cash, participants invest works of art, accumulating 20 artworks over a 20-year period. Ideally, the 20 works by each artist should comprise a representative collection of that artist’s production over that period of time. Most importantly, the artist remains the sole owner of his/her artworks until the work is sold.

A region-specific Curatorial Committee comprised of individuals who are highly experienced and regarded in the field of contemporary art review and select artists for participation in the program.

Following the invitation to participate in the program, the artist and APT signs the Artist Participation Agreement. Within the first 6 months and annually thereafter, the artist is required to propose artworks for consideration by the APT Director.

APT carefully stores these artworks until the time at which each work is sold. During this holding period works are made available for exhibition at museums, galleries and other pre-approved venues.

When artworks are sold, each artist receives forty percent (40) of the net proceeds of the sale of his/her work. Thirty-two (32) percent of net proceeds accrue to the collective benefit of all participating artists in the specific APT. This allows each participating artist to collectively participate in the commercial success of the other 249 artists. The remaining twenty-eight (28) percent of the net proceeds are retained by APT to cover all management and operating costs.

Distribution and Sale: The artist remains the sole owner of his/her artworks until APT decides to sell the work. Artists are expected to invest artworks according to the following schedule: two works a year for the first five years; one work a year for the following five years, and one work every two years for the remaining ten years; for a total of twenty works.

Upon acceptance of a work, APT will issue to each artist an Acceptance Receipt representing the right to forty (40) percent of the net proceeds derived from such artwork and a Participating Interest represented by Pool Units. The Pool Units represent the right to a pro rata interest along with the other artists in the thirty-two (32) percent of the net proceeds from any sale of artworks.

Left: Haroon Mirza Centre: Jeremy Deller Right: Richard Wright

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