Billionaires, celebrities and some say, wealthy Chinese, handed over most of their cash last Sunday to Larry Gagosian at Art Basel, the annual prestigious art fair in Switzerland, which saw sales climb to $1.8 billion.
Forbes and Bloomberg are calling the sales a return to 2008 levels, a time when the global recession was just about to really kick in and when art and objects could be had on the cheap.
The craziest report coming out of the fair however was the $45 million made in 15 minutes by power dealer Gagosian, aka "Gogo," who was named the world's most powerful dealer by ArtReview magazine in October 2010.
American buyers were mostly absent this year.
Daniel Templon gallery director Anee-Claudie Coric told HuffPo, "There are very few Americans this year. I suspect this is due to the weakness of the dollar."
"Gagosian sold $45 million of art within the first quarter of an hour, said two dealers with knowledge of the matter, who declined to be named," writes Bloomberg. "The company, which has galleries in seven countries, doesn’t release sales information."
Above: Larry Gagosian and Dasha Zhukova at Art Basel.