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In 2011 Hong Kong overtook the USA as the world’s largest art and antique market.
It is the gateway to China for a lot of art and artists. Being a free port with no limits on importing art and no sales tax gives Hong Kong a strong position.
Sundaram Tagore was the first artist to set up an international art gallery in 2008, and growth since then has been immense. The emergence of Art HK, the contemporary arts fair now run by Art Basel, has grown from 19,000 attendees and about 100 galleries in 2008 to 67,000 visitors and 266 galleries last May.
Among the big names attracted to Hong Kong are London’s White Cube and New York‘s Gagosian. The government's Leisure and Cultural Services Department subsidises and sponsors international performers brought to Hong Kong. Many international cultural activities are organised by the government, consulates, and privately.