BgArt News Blog
The Scream Returned
Two years after the daylight robbery of Edvard Munch's "The Scream", the painting has been returned safely. In August 2004 "The Scream" and "Madonna" were stolen by masked gunmen from the Munch Museum in Norway.
It's pretty big news, even for mainstream media, so here's what a few people are saying about the recovery..
Forbes magazine said..
"..at a trial this year for three men charged with minor roles in the heist, prosecutors suggested the robbery was staged to distract police from the hunt for a gang behind a commando-style bank robbery four months earlier that killed a police officer and netted $9 million.
Norwegian news media reported recently that the convicted mastermind in the bank heist, David Toska, had made a deal for milder terms in a 21-year prison sentence in exchange for the return of the paintings. Police declined comment."
Times Online in the UK says..
"officers had been working for two years to find the paintings. "All that remains is an expert examination to confirm with 100-per cent certainty, that these are the original paintings. We believe these are the originals."
He said that the "damage was much less than feared" and that he believed the paintings had been in Norway the whole time."
BBC news said..
"Police said no new arrests had been made and the two gunmen remain at large.
In May, Bjoern Hoen, 37, was sentenced to seven years for planning the robbery, Petter Tharaldsen, 37, got eight years for driving the getaway car and Petter Rosenvinge, 34, received four years for supplying the vehicle."
>> Edvard Munch News
, Art Thefts
Thomas Kinkade FBI Investigation
Thomas Kinkade or the "painter of light" is reportedly under investigation by the FBI. It's not the first time the saintly painter
has been in hot water
Kinkade and senior executives have been accused of fraudulently inducing investors to open Thomas Kinkade galleries (selling just Kinkade paintings), and then financially ruining them.
Painter Said to Be Focus of FBI Probe
"The ex-owners allege in arbitration claims that, among other things, the artist known for his dreamily luminous landscapes and street scenes used his Christian faith to persuade them to invest in the independently owned stores, which sell only Kinkade's work."
They really knew how to bait the hook," said one former dealer who spoke on condition of anonymity because of the sensitive nature of the case. "They certainly used the Christian hook." LA Times
>> Famous Artists
, Art Controversies
Helping Artists and Replying to Emails
Hazel Dooney has a new artist blog up and has been thinking about what it is that offends her about getting requests from artists that want help selling their own work.
Firstly, she says..
"There's nothing in their emails that is actually about art, theirs or mine, and they imply that my focus is more on marketing and sales than creativity and plain old hard work."
And she goes on to explain..
"I make art not only because of a passionate desire to communicate but also a jittery compulsion to make real what resides only in my imagination. And when I have a body of work that is ready to be viewed, finding an audience for it is sure as hell very different to launching a healthier breakfast cereal or a gentler washing-up liquid."
Read the full Post.
I don't mind artists asking or sharing things about art (or marketing) with me through email, but the thing that bothers me about requests is art students wanting me to do their work for them! Students will even offer money to do their work for them!! I don't even bother replying to them now, and I don't feel guilty when I delete their emails.
I also mentioned Hazel's Artist Print
before, and her art site is here.
>> Contemporary Artists
, Art Blogs
Record Brett Whiteley Price
One of my favorite artists
recently broke his own sales record at a recent Sotheby's auction in Australia. The four meter wide painting by Brett Whiteley sold for $2.04 million in Sydney lastnight.
It might be big and it might have the Brett Whiteley signature on it, but I think it's a very poor painting by the man. "Frangipani and Hummingbird" has all the elements of a Whiteley, with the ultramarine blue, the flowers, and the bird, yet it still falls way short of his good stuff.
During his last ten years he seemed to produce some sickeningly commercial works that seemed to be giving collectors what they wanted. They wanted works that look like Brett Whiteley so that their friends and acquaintances would recognize the paintings.
Frangipani and Hummingbird is a painting for bragging about, not one for the art museum. A private collector from Melbourne can now say that he/she owns a big Brett Whiteley and the third most expensive Australian painting
to be sold at auction, but I don't think they could say they own a great Whiteley painting.
There was also another records for the night..
Size and controversy do matter in the art world
"CRAIG Ruddy installed himself as an artist capable of raising cash as well as controversy last night when his Archibald Prize-winning portrait of David Gulpilil sold for more than $300,000 in Sydney.
The charcoal portrait was the subject of a recent NSW Supreme Court case to determine whether it was a painting or a drawing, the court declining to make an artistic judgment but creating enough controversy to ensure a bigger sale price.
Sotheby's head of Australian painting Geoff Cassidy said the controversy surrounding the painting helped its sale price, which was more than 30 times Ruddy's previous record of $9600."
>> Art Auction News
, Brett Whiteley
, Australian Art News
, Art Collecting
Selling Art Online
USA Today has wrote an article about how artists are taking advantage of the internet to sell their work.
They talked about a few artists making a living by selling paintings from their website..
- Duane Keiser - He does a small painting each day and sells them for as little as $100 each. Before the success of his website, he was selling just a few paintings each year, and now sells most of his work.
- Justin Clayton - Is a 31 year old artist also selling enough work online to be able to quit his day job and paint full time.
- Julian Merrow Smith - Is a British artist living in Provence and making a living from painting the French countryside.
It's great that artists can make a living without gallery representation, but I think there will still be bricks and mortar art galleries around in 100 years. The one similarity that all the artists above have, is that they are mostly selling small paintings for affordable prices.
From what I have seen and experienced, collectors are hesitant to buy large and/or expensive works online. As great as the internet is, you just can't experience a painting like you can in an art gallery.
There's also the trust factor that the internet has yet to solve completely. People are willing to risk a few hundred dollars on a small painting, but getting a collector to part with several thousand dollars online is much more difficult.
I previously mentioned an artist making up to $25,000 a month selling paintings on eBay.
>> Being an Artist, Art Collecting
For those that are thinking about getting their portrait painted, but want something a little different, why not get a toothpick portrait? ;-)
The San Francisco based artist Steven J. Backman creates sculptures and wall pieces made of toothpicks.
"I find toothpicks and glue to be the most challenging mediums to create unusual pieces of abstract and contemporary art. Unlike ordinary wood, toothpicks have personalities of their own that evolve once they are incorporated into a mass of formed space."
Steven J. Backman
The artist has a summer promotion on until the end of September too, with toothpick portrait commissions available for about $500 USD.
>> Contemporary Artists
, Unusual Art News
Artist Belinda Eaton Interview
I recently asked the contemporary artist Belinda Eaton a few questions about her art. She was featured on the Star Portraits with Rolf Harris television program from the BBC.
1. You were recently featured on the "Star Portraits with Rolf Harris" program on the BBC. How was that experience?
The whole experience was like a roller coaster ride which was ultimately brilliant.
From initially being contacted and declining due to intense fear of coming out of one’s studio and painting in front of people, cameras and ultimately an audience of millions, to the amazing response I received from all over the world.
The concept of the show, to bring three painters together, with totally different styles, characters etc., painting the same portrait, had intrigued me when I saw the first series, the previous year. I never thought I would be contacted to take part, in fact I couldn’t believe any painter could put themselves through the agony of painting in front of a camera.
But it was a really interesting experience. The three of us were so different. With totally different styles, techniques, motivations etc. but unanimously enjoying each others company as we all shared the loneliness of working in our studios being our own driving forces. There was a point when l looked at the three of us waiting for Rolf Harris and thought a cartoonist couldn't have done a better job in characterizing us alongside our paintings.
Which brings me to how great it was to meet Rolf and work with him. Such a generous and warm supporting man, constantly interested in what one was up too and really supportive. I was pleased I went ahead with the show and confronted my demons of fear. The exposure and response was amazing as an estimated 5 million people saw the show on BBC One in the U.K. I hadn't realized that the program would be broadcast beyond the UK, and so far It keeps on spreading. On the 15th August 2006 it was broadcast on ABC TV in Australia, ending up in America next year. So each time it airs my website is bombarded with visits and e-mails and I am amazed at how well people really respond to my paintings.
2. Is the energy and color of your paintings influenced by your cultural background?
I am trying to decipher my ‘cultural background’ and what that really means to me and I would say that my cultural background is an accumulated effect of everything that I have been exposed to during the course of my life.
The many different places and cultures l have lived in, from Africa as a child, New York in the 80´s, Pakistan and France in the 90´s, and finally Spain. So I don’t think I have any fixed perception or conceptions. Quite simply because they are constantly being challenged and maybe if anything, that causes me to create a Belinda reality, from which I can dive out of when it suites me, and grab an image, a discipline, from anywhere, occasionally mixing them all up in a single painting. If anything the studio and the canvas are the one constant in my life and when I stand in front of the canvas I am in the present, allowing the painting to tell me what’s going on and creating a space for intuitive painting and adventure.
3. How has your website been of benefit to you as an artist? Would you have any tips for an artist thinking about starting their own site?
Oh, my website has been fantastic. For me it’s a place of interaction and feedback. I get responses from all over the world and so much feedback, as we painters who work in isolation, need the occasional bit of feedback.
It creates a chain reaction as well, someone starts blogging about you, and one gets the opportunity to do an interview like this. It’s all exposure and you never know, who is browsing. My current exhibition in Germany is a result of the director reading about me on someone’s blog. He flew down to see me, resulting in a show in September in Regensburg, followed by one in Cannes.
One has to be wary of galleries that trawl the art directories and propose to show one for a fee with little risk to themselves.
Most important of all, the website is not just a window for your work to the world, it also works for you, therefore it is so important to really invest in it properly and make sure its easy to view with no silly gimmicks that distract from your work. It’s also very important you find someone who really knows what they are doing to make it visible on the web and get indexed by Google and a whole lot of other things that I don’t really understand.
4. What future plans do you have? Any upcoming exhibitions or projects that you are excited about?
I have a show coming up in Germany in mid September at the Art Affair Gallery which will be really interesting as it features current paintings alongside a few that were done 18 years ago in New York.
The show will continue to France in November. The decision to include the New York paintings has made me really look at the way I paint and respond to my environment and how my technique has changed, although the basic energy is the same. The paintings from New York were on a much larger scale as my studio there was in a church tower and I could just explode with all the space and light flooding through the 3m high windows. I realize with excitement that in few months I move to my new studio, which for the first time since then, is a huge space with fantastic light. In the middle of the Spanish desert, dry and barren with nothing really growing except cacti and olive trees and shifting light that changes the hills and mountains from browns to indigos. I feel a surge of energy coming and a whole new explosion of work . So I am very excited!
work by Belinda can be seen at her website here and there's a profile of her over at artquotes.net.
>> Contemporary Artists
, Artist Interviews
Irv on Artists and Life
Irv has left a comment on the "Crazy Artists post
" that deserves to be a post, rather a comment. So I'm hoping you don't mind Irv! (I would of linked to your site, but I'm guessing that you don't have one?)
People that use blog aggregators like BlogLines to read their favorite blogs probably miss a lot of comments that readers have, so here's Irv's..
There was a time when the commitment to work above all was accepted as appropriate for a wide range of occupations. Today it is to be found among members of a smaller percentage of occupations but the total number has grown so greatly that it is hard to judge whether the percentage of people involved is greater or lesser than in the past.
What has changed are the norms, that is the ethical expectations, applied to all members of society. Some of the older among us may remember the social reports and novels (made into film) which portrayed the clash between the traditional work ethic and the newer family ethic coming into ever greater influence. This was seen to have maximum impact on the role of worker and the role of husband (we are speaking of the late forties and, in particular, the fifties) vis-a-vis his wife, and, even more strikingly, between the husbands job and the needs of his children.
Of course, the tension of role conflict not only became greater along these lines, but the new expectations favoring a career for woman versus the wife, and, most particularly, the mother role, has added dimensions of conflict beyond what we imagined in the fifties (with the beginning of which I became a professional). The artists role is archetypal in all these respects. Artists are given greater leeway for deviance from the norms when they are "geniuses", GREAT ARTISTS, but I doubt (but do not know) whether the vast majority of serious, dedicated, often quite skilled, artists are given the same latitude. I would guess that not being a Van Gogh, Picasso, or.. (insert the names of your choice) the artist who puts his work above his family roles is defined as egocentric, lazy, irresponsible or whatever characterization has been developed in the particular subgroup. In fact, I would hypothesize that those with the greatest ambition for success, whether scientist or artist, is unable to function normally in the family, if normal is defined as consonant with the most generally accepted norms for the general society.
To turn to the question of eyesight and type of art produce, or any of the many statements one sees proliferating in the media, you must remember that the media now assigns people to read the key professional journals, almost every university, research organization now has publicity agents (whatever their label) and the public, increasingly committed to fact not fiction, has an omnivorous hunger for information about itself and its special members. That being the case, hypothesis is treated as fact, what are essentially pilot studies are treated as if they had demonstrated the TRUTH, and anyone, wise, foolish, informed, ignorant, can be cited as an intellectual Messiah.
The process of science has many safeguards against all these, and more, abuses, as artistic work-groups have when the are well organized (and when are they) against the charlatan, the fake, the fraud.The Truth or science is not the truth of art, though both have learned much from the other (at least, if we think of the social sciences, I would not say the same of the physical or natural sciences). Neither is the TRUTH of religion or the many forms of thought, such as Myth,which have enabled people to live in an ever perilous world.
I suppose what I am saying is that Leonardo, Raphael, Michelangelo, Durer, and company, had a much clearer path, no matter how difficult, because they knew themselves to be workman turning out a product, and that their commitment to the family, which was primary for them and everyone, allowed them to concentrate on the work role because it contributed to the family's welfare in the best way possible for them. The artist today is beset by conflicts of commitment far beyond what they faced. We face many more situations in which society has not yet created an accepted order of priority leaving the individual lonely and afraid, inevitably guilty through no self-fault because faced by irreconcilable (at this moment, in this place) social expectations.
(Trivia question, what film actor of cult status spoke that line (and many like
it) in his earlier Broadway career?)
>> Being an Artist
Robert Genn has interesting newsletter online this week, where he asks "How Sick are you?"
The crazy artist is a common stereotype that a lot of artists have to deal with. Some artists have truly deserved the label of the "mad artist", some of us have mad moments, and some of us are happy, well adjusted members of society.
I think I fit into the middle category, but not because I think I'm sometimes mad. I think continually accessing our creative self opens artists up to feelings that a busy office worker or laborer wouldn't usually experience. It's a bit like meditating all day while holding a paint brush.
I like to think of artists as "different", rather than crazy.
Anyway, the newsletter talks about a study that discusses a few artists with very bad eye sight..
"According to John Morley of the St. Louis School of Medicine in Missouri, the presence of cataracts leads to Impressionism. Citing Monet, Renoir and Cassatt, he implies that eye problems helped them to paint the way they did. Cezanne is mentioned for a diabetic condition that caused the color blindness that shows in his work. Van Gogh's probable epilepsy spurred on his hallucinatory imagery--the fuzz and swirls around the stars in Starry Night."
>> Being an Artist
My Favorite Artists
The Australian blogger Darren Rowse has a list writing project going, so I thought I would do a list of my favorite artists and why.
It's hard to narrow it down to just a set list of artists as I have been influenced by so many artists over the years. I also fall in and out of love with particular artists, but a certain few always remain close to me.
- Brett Whiteley - Brett was my doorway into art. He showed me that painting can be more than what is simply in front of us. His drug habit ruined much of his art and life before he died, but he is still at the top of my list.
- Vincent van Gogh - Vinnie will always be near the top of my favorite painters list. Both his passion for art and his paintings have given me endless inspiration.
- Pablo Picasso - The little Spaniard lived a very full life but he still found plenty of time to draw, paint, and sculpt. Whenever I'm not working as much as I should be, I think of how many works Pablo pumped out each year.
- Egon Schiele - I have always had a love of drawing, so Schiele has to be on the list. His paintings are very average, but his drawings are to die for.
- Andy Warhol - To be honest, I don't really like the work of Andy Warhol. But he made artists feel a little less guilty for taking money from art collectors. He helped me see that it's OK to make a living from art.
Alberto Giacometti - Alberto's paintings and drawings are just amazing. He sacrificed color to devote himself to form.
- Anselm Kiefer - I have never seen a whole exhibition by the artist, but the few works I have seen were pretty impressive. His works are massive chunks of paint and texture.
There are so many more great artists that I just adore. I know that the seven artists above will still be in my top 20 in twenty years time though.
For those with a blog and an interest in all things blogging, see ProBlogger.net.
>> Famous Artists, Blogs
Portrait of Adele Block-Bauer
Mario Naves of the New York Observer has written an interesting article about his experience with the most expensive painting in the world
. His first thoughts of the $135 million painting by Gustav Klimt were of a piece of cloth covered with colored mud..
Overpriced and Erotic, Klimt’s Idealized Adele
"Once upon a time, a fellow billionaire asked Mr. Trump why he’d never amassed a collection of art. Why, in fact, wasn't he interested in art at all? "You know what a Van Gogh is?" asked an annoyed Mr. Trump in return. “It’s a piece of cloth with some colored mud on it."
>> Famous Artists
, Art Collecting
Shit Art - Cloaca Machine
I was just watching a program about the Belgian conceptual artist Wim Delvoye. It got me thinking about what art really is. It's a question that is asked so much that it can become boring even thinking about it. But his Cloaca machine forced me to ask myself what art is again.
It's a machine that mimics the human digestive system, from the mouth to the bottom hole. Delvoye feeds Cloaca normal human food and shit comes out the other end. The end product is wrapped in plastic and sold to adoring art collectors.
There have been several versions of his cloaca machine, with the latest being a vertical system that works more like a person.
According to the website dedicated to his shit making machine, they have all sold out, with one hundred pieces being kept for "future capitalization".
He isn't the first artist to use feces to create art either, as the Italian artist Piero Manzoni became famous for canning his own waste and calling his works "Artist's Shit". The MoMA has one.
I can't imagine owning any of the works, but it does make one think about art and the people that buy it.
>> Art Collecting
, Art Controversies
Turkish Artists Online
Here's some more artists by country. I've gone looking for artists in Turkey this time, so I hope most of them are new to people.
I spent a while in Turkey and found it interesting how a lot of artists seemed to embrace elements of both the east and the west, just as their largest city, Istanbul straddles both the east and west. Here's some paintings I did of Turkey a few years ago too.
- Gizem Saka - She is an interesting artist that I mentioned here before.
- Orhan Taylan - An establish Turkish master painter producing nice figurative works.
- Ismail Acar - Realist Turkish painter influenced by the Sufi poet Rumi and the Whirling Dervishes.
- Nevin Cokay - Istanbul based figurative painter of slightly quirky works.
- Melvlut Akyildiz - Painter and sculptor with a sense of humor and very interesting paintings.
- Can Goknil - Turkish painter and book illustrator using themes of mythology, fantasy, and history.
- Elcin Unal - Artist moving between abstraction and figuration quite easily.
- Erkan Genis - Turkish artist painting impressionist works.
See previous posts of Australian, Canadian, or American Artists online.
>> Contemporary Artists
BP Portrait Award Winner
I know the winner was announced at the end of June, but here's a post about the BP Portrait Award for 2006. The paintings will be exhibited until September 17 at The National Portrait Gallery in London. ArtDaily
The winner was the English artist Andrew Tift with his "Kitty" entry. The sitter is Mrs Kitty Godley, the first wife of the painter Lucian Freud
. So the experience of sitting for an artist probably wasn't new to her.
The winner received £25,000 for first place and a £4,000 portrait commission at the National Portrait Gallery Trustees' discretion.
Andrew talks more about the portrait and Kitty Godley over at his blog.
"I wanted the portraits to be very natural, as if in conversation with thoughts being visibly absorbed and formulated. During a conversation our expressions and physiognomy are constantly changing and I thought that a triptych would be the perfect format to explore this idea." Andrew Tift
>> Lucian Freud
, Art Competitions
Fair Use or Copyright Infringement
Lile from Art.net has written about an artist/photographer friend that went to court over a copyright infringement and was told it was a case of "Fair Use".
Here's the story..
"An artist brought a case against the San Jose Mercury News for copyright infringement because they published his art without his knowledge or consent. It was published in conjunction with a book review of a book that contained a copyrighted photo that belonged to the artist and photographer, Christopher R Harris. The copyright notice that was printed with the photo in the book was removed when the image was published by the Mercury News paper.
When the artist confronted the paper, they said that they were unwilling to compensate the artist and suggested that the artist "sue" them if he wanted to pursue the matter. So he did just that! Unfortunately the jury ruled in favor ot the newspaper saying that it was a case of "fair use". Art.net
There's also a more detailed plot of the whole story here.
The San Jose Mercury News also published an article about the outcome of the case here, with this quote..
"It means a lot,'' Chadwick said. "This is a classic example of how newspapers use material that is sent to them every day. If a photographer or photo agency had veto over the use of these kinds of images, then newspapers would just stop using them and readers wouldn't get the visual information.''
>> Art Controversies
Spencer Tunick in Germany
The New York photographer Spencer Tunick has recently encouraged up to 800 people to put their birthday suits on in Düsseldorf, Germany. Tunick used a monumental nude sculpture by Arno Breker and the Museum Kunst Palast as settings for his nude installations.
The work was commissioned by the Museum Kunst Palast and will be exhibited their on September 30 this year.
Spencer Tunick Creates Body Sculpture in Düsseldorf
"With this installation, Tunick is connecting with the Düsseldorf Quadriennale06 – the first Year of Art proclaimed by the city and henceforth to be held every four years. Patently with the body theme he is also resuming one that plays such an important part in the work of Caravaggio, to whom museum kunst palast is dedicating a concurrent exhibition of thirty high-calibre loans" ArtDaily
>> Spencer Tunick
Fake Vincent van Gogh in Australia?
The National Gallery in Melbourne, Australia may have itself an expensive fake Vincent van Gogh portrait. British experts on the Dutch master have come up with a list of inconsistencies, which point toward the work being a forgery.
Some of the things that experts were critical of were; Vincent didn't mention it any letters, it is mounted differently to his other work, it has had the lower part of the painting (including the signature) cut off, and it's the only horizontal portrait by Van Gogh.
British Art Experts Say Australian van Gogh a Fake
National Gallery of Victoria (NGV) director Gerard Vaughan conceded Monday that Head of a Man would be worthless if the bulk of art historians concurred with the view of Michael Daley, director of Art Watch UK, that the NGV's prize exhibit had "all the hallmarks of a pre-existing picture tricked up to resemble a Van Gogh."
I think artists must sometimes make art experts pull their hair out in frustration. Artists experiment, they produce flops, they use different materials sometimes, and they don't always paint the same painting. Vincent could of used a different mounting method, he could of painted it horizontally, and he may not have been very happy with it, so he might of chose not to mention it to Theo in his letters.
I'm not saying I think it is or isn't a real Vincent van Gogh, I'm just saying that artists can be unpredictable too.
>> Vincent van Gogh
, Art Controversies
Photoshop Renaissance at Worth1000.com
There's another interesting Photoshop competition over at Worth1000.com. I love popping by to see their art related challenges that they set for digital artists.
This one is part 6 of the Modern Renaissance, where modern celebrities are given the look of the Renaissance. Here's a couple favorites..
This one is Nicole Kidman by Leonardo da Vinci.
And this one is Jennifer Lopez, also by Leonardo.
Worth1000 is a great way to waste a lot of time online. I've also mentioned the Monsters
and Art Fakes
from previous competitions.
>> Art Competitions
, Internet News
Money Series Painting
I recently received a new painting to add to my small but growing art collection. It's called 7 Euros by the Australian artist Anthony White. Seven Euros is currently worth 7 euros, including postage and handling ;-)
I asked Anthony some questions
recently about his money series of paintings and how he started painting money.
In his previous life, Anthony was a stockbroker for Credit Suisse First Boston. He turned to art after his girlfriend became tired of his constant discussions about money..
"My girlfriend got sick of me thinking about money all the time. I guess this happens when you work as a stockbroker. My girlfriend thought I needed to get a hobby to try and get a more rounded personality. I went back to art and The Money Series was the first thing that came out."
>> Contemporary Artists
, Art Collecting
Artist Pension Trust Interview
I recently asked the new CEO of Artist Pension Trust (APT), Bijan Khezri a few questions about the organization and how it could benefit artists.
1. Could you explain what the Artist Pension Trust does and how it would benefit artists?
APT is a barter-based program in which artists are selected to contribute 20 works of art over 20 years. Operating on the financial principle of mutual assurance, artists benefit from the sale of their own works in addition to sales from other artists whose work is invested within their Trust.
2. What criteria do you use when accepting or selecting artists?
There is no specific criteria. Artists are approached by a Trust-specific Selection Committee consisting of artists, curators and other experts from the art world. Each Trust has its own curatorial committee. Artists may also apply themselves; applications are available for download at www.artistpensiontrust.org.
3. Will the works be exhibited or leased while held by Artist Pension Trust?
Any work that is deposited with the Trust will be available for loan to museums and curatorial projects making every effort to support the artists’ career development.
4. Is it possible for an artist to decide to leave or can an artist be forced to leave the trust?
Artists may chose to leave the APT program, but can not be forced to leave other than for non-performance of their contractual obligations. Artist Pension Trust designed a program that rewards loyalty to the plan and the artists who participate. Artists who withdraw from the program before fulfilling the required contribution of 20 works over a 20 year period will receive appropriate benefits, based on the length of their participation and the value of the works they contributed.
5. Are there plans to open more trusts in new regions around the world?
At this stage, we have a very good coverage of the world’s leading art metro-poles. Are we open to considering additional centers? Absolutely. But for now, our focus is on growth and fine-tuning our existing operations.
6. Why are you qualified to lead APT, Bijan? And what plans do you have for the future of the company?
Whilst my professional background is in finance, I have been running publicly listed companies with significant multinational operations. I have also been collecting young emerging art for many years. Indeed, APT is right at the junction of three of my most passionate interests: finance, art and globalization.
In terms of plans, I believe, there are short, medium and long-term objectives:
In the short-term, I would certainly not want to miss the opportunity to fine-tune and improve what we have. Any business, but a start-up one, in particular, should constantly ask: what can we learn to do things better? And then we have to implement changes effectively.
In the medium term, I want this Company to be globally integrated. To date, we are a sum of Trusts. The arts market is increasingly global, and we need to be a gateway to any art center in the world for every single artist participating in any one of our Trusts. We are the world’s only financial services organization that can add value to the artist, globally.
In the long-term, I want this Company to be the world’s leader in a whole range of financial products focusing on the needs of the artist. To date, artists have very limited access to financial products such as mortgages, for example. The banking sectors’ innovation and willingness to step into this market have been compromised for obvious reasons: lack of liquidity, lack of market intelligence and risk averseness. Our model of pooling the interests of artists will prove to be the key to launching a whole range of financial products. Our global reach together with an unparalleled access to location-specific intelligence on the arts markets, will make us a natural force in a growing segment of the banking sector. The Trust is our first product.
For more information on the Artist Pension Trust (APT), see there website here.
>> Art Interviews
, Being an Artist