Sarasota artist makes the cut


Sarasota artist makes the cut


Date: September 13, 2013
by: Mallory Gnaegy | A&E Editor


There’s a new revolution in the way people are buying art — it’s going online. Forbes ran an article Sept. 6 about, a website that automates suggestions and lets viewers browse art that can be bought and sold to a network of more than “150,00 registered users, serving more than 230 million artwork views to audiences across 186 countries,” according to the article.

The website works similarly to Pandora to give suggestions based on preference, and each user has a profile. Although, you can’t search the site for cities, such as Sarasota, you can browse the exclusive list of gallery partners — there’s only 500 galleries featured around the world and 1,000 articles on the waiting list, according to Forbes. Of the 11,000 plus artists featured on the site, local artist Bill Kelley is excited to be one of them.

“This is a really big deal,” he says. "Basically, it's all the big players in the art world: the big galleries, the artsits and the critics." Kelley suggests he believes, and says he's in good company in thinking so, that this is the way of the future.

He was accepted on the site because of a gallery in New York that features his work. All of the art dealings are through the galleries, and not individual artists. 

So what does one of our local galleries think of this new-ish concept? State of the Arts Gallery co-owner Tre Michel says it's an interesting and educational site, but finds virutal sales are challenging to the art world because collectors and clients "need to intimately and intuitively connect with the art pieces," she says. 

As for now, no Sarasota galleries have made it; but if Kelley's preditctions are true, it's only a matter of time.

To read more about Bill Kelley, click here.

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