If a number of Internet users and also artists are reluctant to use social networks, many artists already have an account on Facebook or other social networks, and publish content, with more or less regularity. This article aims to share our experiences and analysis of buyer behavior to promote sales.
Over-representation of social network visitors in buyers
It is commonly accepted that social networks bring visitors to your site, and thus allow to generate traffic and interactions (comments / contacts / sales). But do you know how much?
To find out, we compiled the traffic statistics of all Artmajeur artists, it appears that traffic from social networks constitutes on average 6 to 10% of visitors.
But what is interesting is that these visitors from social networks are responsible for 20 to 30% of sales volume generated.
This means that visitors from social networks are more focused, more interested and, in short, more "engaged", which translates into: more sales.
Why do social network visitors buy more?
Several reasons can explain it:
- The recommendation
A visitor who comes from a social network is "recommended" by a trusted third party (friend / family / colleague / person regularly followed, etc.). This is what gives more importance to the visit, as in the phenomenon of traditional "word of mouth".
Unlike visitors who come from a search engine and can leave immediately as they visit many sites on the search results page, users who come from a social network have already spent time on the image gallery, the favorite images board or social profile that got them interested, or that they follow. If they decide to go further out of the social network to visit an outside site, they are more likely to pursue to a contact or purchase process.
Visitors who follow you and share your works on the networks regularly see your work, your news, your exhibitions: it helps to create a climate of trust that is conducive to sales.
Which networks work best?
On Artmajeur, we found that the networks that work the best are (the order varies significantly depending on each artists):
The concept of "stories" allows to establish a real proximity with the public, showing both the works in progress, and general photos of the workshop, exhibitions etc ...
Very popular, generalist network, less focused on Art, but with a very important user base
Network specialized in images: users create thematic boards, which are then consulted by users. Your works are then shared with other similar works, which creates a strong and specialized context surrounding a given theme.
How to benefit from this free exhibition?
It's very simple: you have to share your work to the fullest! Artmajeur offers you all the tools you need with share buttons on the right of your works, and with Facebook integration (buy button on Facebook + art shop on Facebook).
To enjoy a visit boost, share your new works as soon as they are posted:
- Make sure the image is perfectly documented (title, description, price, dimensions, keywords)
- Use the share buttons on the right side of the image
- Always accompany your publications with a small message or personal comment for more proximity with the public, it multiplies the number of sharings ;)
PS: do not hesitate to ask your audience to share your work as well, the viral effect is considerable and your work will be seen even more!
multi artists account
Artmajeur launches a new type of profile: The MULTI-ARTISTS account!
Why a new type of profile?
This profile is a necessity to better meet the needs of art galleries, artist's agents and artists' associations, with more powerful tools adapted to their communication, management and recruitment needs.
With more than 6,000 galleries are already registered, more and more art galleries, but also artists' agents, and cultural associations use Artmajeur to recruit artists!
The process of finding and recruiting artists by art galleries and artistic agents around the world is facilitated by a very simple invitation / application service.
This account is perfectly adapted to:
- Art Galeries
- Artists Agents
- Artistic associations
- Groups / artist collectives
- Cities cultural department, cultural organizations etc ...
What are the benefits for artists?
- More likely to be recruited by galleries or agents!
- Ability to leave the administration of his account to a gallery in case of exclusivity requested by the gallery
- Ability to entrust his account to a trusted third party who takes care of everything (works, messages, transactions)
What advantage for galleries or associations?
The group's artists appear directly on the profile of the gallery with his works, biography.
It allows a single administrator to:
- Create artists accounts
- Invite existing artists (whether they are on Artmajeur or outside)
- Present / follow / sell very easily the works of multiple artists!
- Benefit from powerful tools to manage the communication of his group of artists
Optionally, the administrator of the multi-artist account can also:
- Fully manage the account of the artist and all its contents
- Manage messages, transactions for all his artists
Create your multi-artist profile for your association, your art gallery or your artist collective, it's easy and free!
Use the "Register" button at the top right of the Artmajeur pages, and select the type of account that corresponds to your group.
You can also checkout the Online Documentation.
The importance of the first impression
All new works that you add to your account appear on Artmajeur's homepage, and on the New Works section, so you have to make sure that your works are presented in their best light, and well documented before offering them to the public !
New status "unpublished work"
A new publication status has been installed for artworks. It specifically allows to NOT publish a work immediately when it is loaded.
When you load a new work, it is not yet documented (title / description), it is not necessarily in the right category, it has no price, dimensions etc ...
Now, new works are added with the new status "NOT PUBLISHED": you have the time that you need to document perfectly your work:
And most importantly, you can perfectly crop your image with the tools of cropping / rotation available directly on the page of modification.
How to publish a new work?
Once your new artwork is perfectly framed and documented, just click the PUBLISH button at the bottom of the artwork edit form. Your artwork will then be shown to the public on your profile, on the gallery, and on Artmajeur's homepage!
A new version of the profile of the members has been put in place. It has been developed in collaboration with collectors and art lovers, of whom we have made dozens of interviews!
The new presentation allows a simpler and more homogeneous access to your works, including the ability to filter more easily by price, recent works and access directly to what they are looking for.
Some elements are now presented on the PRESENTATION tab, so as not to overload the profile's home page and maintain easier and clearer access for collectors who access your gallery. Content management is also improved and above all more visible.
The profile homepage
Visitors now go directly to the gallery with a direct view of the works.
Visitors can filter works by price / recent works / galleries
The default view
You have the option to choose the starting view of your gallery from the ranking menu.
Subscribers / artists followed / collections of favorites
These data are now available from the PRESENTATION tab
BLOG / VIDEO / AGENDA sections are available on NEWS
The video section is merged with the Blog
Your opinion is important to us: Feel free to contact us at support to give us your opinion on the novelties and improvements you want!
The RGPD came into effect on May 25, 2018, it applies to all data of European individuals.
What are my obligations as an artist?
The RGPD applies for all data collected and their use. As an artist, if you collect or use user / customer data, you are also bound to respect it!
Concretely, in the majority of cases, you simply need to make sure that the services you use are all compatible with the GDPR.
If you collect data yourself, you must ensure that the users concerned provide you with the same level of control and protection as the one requested by the RGPD:
- Data Collection: It is forbidden to collect data without the consent of users! For example, you can not collect emails or any other information on the internet.Users must specifically agree to provide you with this data, and they must be able to deny you this right.
- Data portability: Any user whose data you have must be able to retrieve it at any time
- Prevention of data theft: If you host user data, you have an obligation to do everything possible to protect against theft. If such a flight were to take place, you have the obligation to inform the users concerned.
- Profiling: If you use the user data for profiling purposes (to determine their preferences, send them mailings or targeted advertising), you must inform them precisely
To conclude , the new European regulation is an additional protection for all: the exploitation of our data is a sensitive subject, and the imposed framework will give us more confidence in their treatment, which is a good thing.
Whether as a company, an artist, or an art gallery, every effort must be made to build and maintain this trust!
Following the new European regulation "GDPR" (General Data Protection Regulation - https://www.eugdpr.org/), we have updated the privacy section of our general conditions of use. In practice, we did not change our rules, they were already compliant with the GDPR, but we wrote an easy to read and understand version of these terms, according to the recommendations of the GDPR. The new version is available at https://www.artmajeur.com/en/legal.
These terms took effect on May 25, 2018 (deadline imposed by the GDPR). The use of Artmajeur as a member or a simple visitor implies your acceptance of this updated version of the terms and conditions of use.
However, in an effort to be even more flexible, if you refuse the terms and conditions, you have the means to permanently delete your account from the section MY ARTMAJEUR> SETTINGS (Attention: this deletion is irreversible).
The Artmajeur team
In September 2014, Canadian radio CBC presented a young artist who claimed to be the inventor of a revolutionary art, the invisible art. She was describing a work she had worked on for hours, but that could not be seen. It was a hoax.
What the authors of this farce could not imagine was that many invisible art initiatives had already been experimented by artists like Duchamp, Magritte or Warhol.
In June 2011, the artist duo Praxis sponsored by comedian James Franco launched the "Non-Visible Museum" or MONA, "an eccentricity of imagination, a museum that reminds us that we live in two worlds: the physical world of sight and the non-visible world of thought.Completely made up of ideas and sniffing at the art market, the works will simply be described to visitors ... "
More generally, the promoters of the invisible art postulate that art is not limited to physical achievements to see or to possess.
Works inaccessible, hidden, invisible or to disappear to keep only the memory, would be equally able to provide artistic emotions.
To evoke a work disappeared or invisible to the naked eye, would make it revive a posteriori.
These very conceptual artistic orientations are based on the rejection of the mercantile and speculative turn of contemporary art.
On the other side of the coin, promoting the artistic emotion of a work that is not seen or touched, and focusing on narrative or story telling, could disqualify this approach.
The incredulous spectator, prevented from making his own judgment by exercising all his senses, would be reduced to believing "the artist" on his word ...
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Socialter defines creativity as "the Grail of the 21st century" and the World Economic Forum places it at the heart of the four key competencies of our time with critical thinking, the art of communicating and collaborating. Essential to the survival and development of the company, it is essential to promote and integrate it into the corporate culture.
What is creativity?
It is the ability of a person or group of people to design and implement a new concept, a new object or to discover an original solution to a problem. Creativity is at the origin of invention (when used for a product or service) and innovation (when this invention applies to a market).
Are we all creative?
In the collective unconscious, creativity appears as the prerogative of some solitary geniuses, often cursed, endowed with innate gifts and disconcerting facilities. In reality, each person has a creative potential often under-exploited or constrained by conformism, pessimism, fear of failure, family or social judgment, education.
What are the characteristics of the creative people it is up to us to develop?
- self-esteem in any event;
- determination, commitment and perseverance at all times;
- an unlimited curiosity to embrace all fields of knowledge, observation or the human condition;
- high speed of information processing of any kind associated with a taste for complexity;
- a flash resolution of problems associated with an almost automatic generation of ideas;
- an ability to imagine other worlds, other systems, other logics.
The thought of a creative is both:
- analogue (linked to the free association of ideas and images coming from different and often compartmentalized universes),
- divergent (original, fluid and flexible),
- original: free from gender stereotypes,
-deconcerting: capable of operating radical reversals.
The great enemies of the creative are fatigue and stress, the search for perfection, specialization, the "academic" spirit, the routine and the lack of openness to the world.
Creating something that has never existed requires enthusiasm, experimentation and a detachment of knowledge and the past. It's an open, free-spirited attitude that feeds on everything and is driven by challenges.
How to become more creative?
Many exercises that promote idea generation and problem solving exist. Nevertheless, developing a creative mindset is the key for those who wish to exploit their creative potential, namely:
- absorb everything and be open to new experiences to find inspiration and promote the analog process;
- constantly ask questions to deepen your knowledge;
- to think like a child, to free oneself from schemas, constraints and forbidden, to move away from reason;
- to question and reconsider the gains;
- hear all points of view to develop new paths and new interactions;
- alternate creative phase and mental rest phase;
- make sleep his ally to develop the unconscious thought;
- take a distance on things to implement the imagination;
- develop one's sense of humor, have wit;
- take risks, consider failures as a way to progress and develop boundless determination;
- never censor ideas;
- develop the fun aspect of creation by moving from cock to donkey, associating, taking the opposite, playing the paradox.
Even if the great creations are generally the fact of an individual connected to his desires, his thoughts, his inner challenges, the innovation is often a collective act, the fruit of a creativity and an original action of team. Theoretically, the creativity of a group of individuals together should have infinitely greater potential than that of an isolated person. In practice, the optimization of "collective intelligence" involves creating the conditions for group creativity and setting up the organization that allows the individual creative process to be replicated at the team level.
Different approaches such as design thinking promote the spread of the culture of creativity in the company and the organization of the different stages of preparation, incubation, generation of solutions and validation. In business, creative improvisation with decision and immediate implementation does not exist. On the other hand, the respect of the different creative stages can allow the emergence of complementarities and a creative team spirit that will allow to interiorize the creative process and accelerate the group innovation.
To remain competitive and foster innovation, one of the means to remove the resistance to change of employees (seeing no personal interest, considering not having the required skills or feeling threatened by the unknown) is to set up a culture of creativity applied in the rules of the art.
By restoring trust, enhancing value, by collaborating on joint projects in which everyone contributes, by making a difference in the collective fruits, the company will gain in flexibility, adhesion and dynamism, essential in an open economy more and more globalized before meet increasingly individualized needs.
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Art, a mode of expression of a subjectivity, seems at first sight disconnected from the notions of organization, profit or profitability and rational management methods used in the management of a company.
Art, an individual activity, irrational, out of context and sensitive, generally arouses the skepticism of management and the mistrust of employees seeking "validating" technical training. It is these same well-established patterns that favor management and technology over human sciences and artistic disciplines. However, art and management have every interest in crossing each other to enrich each other.
The company has a lot to learn from the artistic process, in particular:
- the quest for meaning: the artistic process conveys values and carries a particular mission;
- project management: each work, composition or realization, requires a real project management;
- the mastery of the techniques of realization: without control of the basic techniques brought to evolve with the experimentation and the artistic approach towards personal and original techniques, the art does not exist (the artist must be an outstanding technician doubled a technical innovator);
- an iterative process: the artist constantly interacts with the work in progress, making the necessary adjustments to achieve the desired result;
- an approach of originality and creativity: what distinguishes the artist from the craftsman is this creative ability, this search for novelty. We speak of "performance" or artistic originality;
- a humanist approach: at the same time, a personal vision of the world and an uncompromising look at reality, art expresses in a particular aesthetic form the world around us;
- total risk taking: there is no certainty that the work is well received by the market;
- a highly competitive art market: art has no borders, competition is global. The artist, guided by a personal approach that has no commercial intention, is confronted with the hypercompetition and the material necessity of creating his market and building up his base of customers and users;
- A work of art is above all a "sensitive user experience" (emotion, wonder, energy). The artist must maximize this experience by facilitating the accessibility of his art if he wants to sell his work;
- an individual creation that inserts itself and interacts with its environment and society;
- a process of expression and personal realization.
The modern manager who wants to foster collaboration and creativity has every interest in developing his own creative potential and immersing himself in artistic processes in order to facilitate group creativity. Individual creativity is a state of mind that can be stimulated (exhibition visits, open courses, creativity workshops ...). Creation processes can be learned through contact with artists (artistic interventions in the company, visits to workshops, conferences, etc.).
The artist has a lot to learn from the manager.
Recently, the concept of artist-entrepreneur, an artist managing his artistic work as a business, has appeared. In an ultra-competitive market, the artist can be brought to disseminate his works to build an identity, a brand, to invent new communication and sales methods, to develop a range of products derived from the original production adapted to his market. Some artists produce works "ready to hang", more affordable, allowing them to cope with the costs of producing more ambitious works. This approach criticized by some purists is not necessarily a brake on originality or creativity. If the artist does not resign himself to producing "what works", but develops accessible artistic concepts of tomorrow. To have financial resources linked to the sale of his works is the goal and the dream of every artist, but also his greatest source of freedom and innovation.
Obviously, in a world that requires more and more flexibility, openness, originality and efficiency, these two approaches, artistic and managerial, are called to nourish each other to give birth to a creative management and organized arts activities.
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We receive messages every days from collectors who wish to buy works but can not finalize their transactions because they are blocked by a lack of information necessary for the sale!
- The dimensions of the work are missing
- There is no price for delivery
- Absence of payment method
- Terms of sale not defined
Today's Internet users are used to finding this information easily and buy regularly from merchant sites: it is crucial to take the time to configure your gallery to allow collectors to feel reassured and confident. It is only in this way that it is possible to trigger the act of purchase!
The price of the work
- Enter the price! If the price is not shown, you lose 90% of potential buyers!
Methods of payment
- Set up at least 1 payment method in section MY ACCOUNT> SETTINGS
- It is strongly recommended to offer PAYPAL to secure the transaction
- Configure the standard shipping prices on section MY ACCOUNT> SETTINGS
- Specify any shipping costs by editing each work if necessary
Terms & Conditions
- Choose the standard terms of sale, or write your own terms of sale on MY ACCOUNT> SETTINGS
Information on the work:
- Very important: Specify the dimensions of the work
- Indicate the title and write a description that indicates the context and tells the story of the work to make the visitor dream !
The visuals of the works:
- Load a good photo, well centered, well lit
- Do not add text / date / copyright
- Crop it perfectly, remove any disruptive elements
We estimate that the number of sales on the platform could be multiplied by 10 or more if all buyers had all the required information on a work at the time they wish to make their purchase!
how to sell art online
A very good article of the journalist Audrey Chabal on Artmajeur currently makes the home page of Forbes, to be found on the following link:
Interview TV at our offices in Montpellier - France 3 reportage by J.Escafre / F.Jobard / F.Alibert
As part of the improvement of our services, new servers will be installed on the weekend of 19 and 20 August, which can cause slower or more severe downtime depending on the traffic on the site, and Can in particular impact the display of the images temporarily.
We do our utmost to deploy the new equipment as quickly as possible and apologize for any inconvenience.
The services will be fully operational again on Monday 21st evening.
Thank you for your patience !
The first Aboriginal rock paintings date back to the dawn of time (more than 50,000 years ago), much earlier than those found in Europe. First forms of known art, perpetuated on their original support (rock, sand ...) until twenty years ago then with modern techniques (canvas, acrylic ...), are now threatened with extinction.
Aboriginal art is both a sacred art and a ritual art used in initiation ceremonies. These representations evoke the Dream Time, the time of supernatural beings that have arisen from the earth, traveled and created the world and living beings. The space sacred time, space parallel to ours always pre-exists. Only initiates can come into contact with him during ritual ceremonies.
At the time of the creation of the world, these fantastic beings left traces in the landscape. The paintings are a kind of narrative and symbolic cartography which revive their work of creation of the world. By linking the two worlds, activating and diffusing the vital energy of the great ancestors, they allow life to perpetuate itself and the world not to disappear. Basically, the great Aboriginal artists are painting to ensure the survival of their community and more broadly of the world! Aboriginal art is a collective spiritual art with a naturalistic, figurative or geometric style.
The "aboriginal artistic movement" itself was born in the 1970s under the impetus of an English teacher Geoffrey Bardon who pushed the students of the community of Papunya (center of Australia) to reproduce on walls, panels or canvas the motifs of the Dream Time. According to the critic Robert Hughes, the last great pictorial artistic movement of the XXth century was born ... The sacred representations bearing power and history being reserved for the initiated, different techniques (such as pointillism) were used by the artists to preserve their secret character and show only the secular part. Success was such that Aboriginal art sales peaked at $ 200 million per year in the years 1990-2000. After having been ignored for a long time, this commercial success made it possible for the aboriginal communities to reconstitute themselves and to disseminate their millenary culture to the world in a suitable form.
Considered to be the legacy of an endangered civilization, this art was categorized by the art market as "ancient, ethnographic art", and progressively confined to stereotypes, techniques and standardized motifs giving the lead to "historical" artists and leaving little room for a more contemporary creation. Few merchants supporting young artists, the great initiates who bear the millennial pictorial tradition disappearing without transmitting their art, the vitality and the renewal of aboriginal art is seriously in danger. All the more the aboriginal communities, struggling for lack of means to assume both a role of social and artistic support, are threatened with regrouping near major cities by the regional governments.
Ancient rock art is also in danger, threatened by urban development, mining, erosion, and vandalism. 50% of the rock art could disappear within forty years if not soon protected. The support of some international museums such as the Musée du Quai Branly can not replace that of local authorities, which are struggling to recognize, preserve and support the identity, culture and art of the natives of the terra nullus "(a land which belongs to no one" according to the 1770 declaration of James Cook, one of the discoverers of Australia), yet an essential component of Australian identity.
Beyond this, without mobilization, what constitutes the heritage of mankind could eventually be reduced to a digital database of missing petroglyphs and paintings produced for the layman, truncated with their original sacred motifs, which would sign the end of Australian Aboriginal art.
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Sixty years after its launch, pop art, one of the main cultural movements of the twentieth century, has gone through time and societal evolutions, well above all the trends. Fed and likened to the popular culture, it transformed radically the whole artistic chain.
Popular art or pop art asserted itself by taking the opposite stance to the abstract expressionism (action painting by Jackson Pollock, colorful painting by Mark Rothko ...), too academic, too technical and too esoteric.
The themes were inspired by popular culture, its images, its advertising or drawing techniques. The ordinary consumption goods, treated with a touch of irony, conveying their forceful images to the public. The reproduction, duplication, superposition, combination of the popular iconography, enhanced with pure and vivid colors or geometric shapes were supposed to reflect the chaos produced by television, media, advertising, fashion, pop music, ...
Free from all conventions, pop art will revolutionize art. From the design of it, to its production, even by the way it is promoted.
• The idea, the powerful expression (style) of the work will be considered more important than the work itself. Its production, often using materials of industrial origin (acrylic, screen printing ...) will not require a lot of technicality. The workshop will become a factory, so dear to Andy Warhol.
• Reproduction and mass production will upset the traditional uniqueness of the work.
• The generally black-colored line contrasting with the clear line of the advertising or comic strip, is embellished with colors with no gradient effects that attract the eye and give more impact to the image.
• The use of symbols and popular images will desecrate the work of art.
• Happenings and environments will play an important role in the promotion and sale of this "ready to eat" art form.
Art in search of simplicity and efficiency, trying to make big impression thanks to its techniques and popular inspirations. Pop art has in turn enriched and stylized popular imagery.
It will strongly influence the generations of artists: from conceptual art, to graffiti artists or urban artists such as Basquiat or Keith Harring, the neo-pop (Morimura And the kitsch artist Jeff Koons) to vintage, graphic design and web design ...
Turning out to be particularly accurate in a digital world where the image, the immediate, the short-lived, the simple and clear, the hard-hitting prevail, its by-products became simple objects of consumption bought instinctively…How ironic! Pop art has literally melted into popular culture.
If its technical and esthetic qualities are debatable with regards to the realizations of great masters such as Velazquez, Monet or Picasso, its artists always reach millions in auctions. Its stylistic innovations used in numerous creative domains (advertising, design) are still powerful. Part of the collective cultural imagination, its visionary and opportunistic artistic approach is undoubtedly ranking first in the history of art and the culture.
Born in the United States in the 1970s, street art regroups works (images, visual signatures) created in the street, other than graffiti style writing (signatures).
Recently legitimized by the art market, it has a strong public enthusiasm, echoed by digital technologies.
Street art is an ephemeral and unsolicited art, assimilated to vandalism, inscribed on the walls, façades of buildings of the urban area. Sticking to the evolutions of contemporary society, playful or aesthetic, it aims to be seen by the crowd in order to provoke, testify or embellish its everyday life.
Street artists use different techniques:
- graffiti: aerosol bombs projecting colored and indelible painting;
-stencil: cardboard, metal sheets or cut-out x-rays reproducing patterns or figures on which painting is "bulged";
- "yarn bombing" or technique of knitting: multiple yarns of wool of different colors;
- tape art: adhesive tapes (brown tape art), or canvas and waterproof used by masons (duct tape art);
- three-dimensional "street installations" designed to be moved and not "damaging" the public space.
This popular art, exposed to all winds, with a vocation of identity, protest and aesthetics, has since a while entered galleries and private collections. Some of Jean-Michel Basquiat's and Bansky's achievements were simply torn from their original urban location to be auctioned off.
Many "street artists” seeking a longevity and a remuneration for their work helped produce a derivative production," living room "works inspired by their originally urban work. Even these pieces are deprived of original street art characteristics (ephemeral, in situ, free ), more and more amateurs are attracted by big names of the urban counterculture.
It is clear that information technologies (mobile and digital internet), promoting a culture of image, ephemeral, instantaneous, are powerful tools for disseminating and preserving the works of street artists. Online communities of amateur have been formed providing an audience that surpasses that of physical space.
Everyone being focused on their smartphone rather than on urban space, it is likely that in the future street artists will create directly on digital support for a digital public.
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Art brut or Raw art is an artistic genre increasingly valued for its singularity, its inventiveness and its emotional impact.
Defined in 1945 by Jean Dubuffet as a simple and natural art, executed by non-professionals, having neither artistic culture nor pretension or cultural approach, it is a spontaneous, impulsive art, giving way to invention, techniques and non-academic materials.
Like Paul Klee or André Breton, a surrealist writer looking for inconscious creation, Jean Dubuffet began collecting what was called "the art of the fools" in the 1920s. He subsequently broadened the specter of raw art to all forms of spontaneous creation, realized by mediums, marginalized, prisoners or the excluded to the ... "men of the common", outside artistic circuits.
Rough art is a vital, inner expression, devoid of any cultural purpose, communication or commerce.
"Art uncultivated, arising from a gift of nature, devoid of any relation to the artistic field " according to Pierre Bourdieu, this art disturbs.
Often repetitive, obsessive or even complex, it joins the approach of some artists obsessively exploring the same artistic problematic.
Away from the history of art, it has existed since the dawn of time.
Not altered by the standards of adult life, cultural conditioning or conformation to the rules of cultural art, it is an act of pure creation. By referring to the creative impulse as an expression of the mystery of existence, raw art is reaching a wide audience.
Jean Dubuffet thought that raw art should escape the market because it existed autonomously.
In the 1970s, a similar movement called « Outsider art » emerged, highlighting marginal, self-taught creators who conceived their work in solitude and outside the artistic milieu. Many raw artists saw their market value flying, art brut became paradoxically a dynamic component of the art market ...
However, the legitimation of this artistic genre has opened the art market to non-professionals, self-taught artists painting with their guts and their soul.
The universal nature of these creations being appreciated by an increasingly wide audience, a greater official recognition of these original artworks could revivify the official sclerotic art.
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The CoBrA movement (for Copenhagen-Brussels-Amsterdam), lasting from 1948 to 1951, is one of the most important post-war avant-garde movements.
Composed of Danish (Asger Jorn), Dutch (Appel Karel) and Belgian painters (Corneille, Pierre Alechinsky) and Belgian surrealist poets (Christian Dotremont and Joseph Noiret), this international movement has liberated artistic expression by overtaking the traditional opposition between figurative and abstract expression.
Eager to meet the authenticity and deep nature of human beings, sensitive to the primitive expressions free from theories, norms, and conventions, such as naive art, prehistoric art, medieval popular art, children’s art, CoBrA artists have restored spontaneity, energy, bright colors and original shapes in art.
The CoBrA movement intended to return to the original purity of Art.
After drawing irrational shapes, they were nervously painting bright colors which reflected the energy and the instinctive action of the artist. Shapes were literally flamed by colors.
As a result, their works seemed either barbaric because, according to Karel Appel,"they took place in a barbaric epoch", or childish because they were searching the childhood of art.
CoBrA artists were looking for a universal expression through experimentation, spontaneous creation, and liberation of forms and colors.
This was a return to a less reflective and playful art as if art was a feast.
Since art was no longer a business of technicians or professionals, since hierarchies or "artistic" complexes have disappeared, art became again popular, available to all.
Undoubtedly Cobra artists have developed a powerful expressive experimental language (using either drawing, sculpture, wood, earth, metal, words, sounds or writing).
Cleared from complexes, judgments, and conventions, this pure art liberated the creative energies of our deep nature, contributing to our fulfillment.
"Returning to the childhood of art by recovering our childlike soul is the timeless message of the CoBrA manifesto, at a time when aesthetic and intimate art is overwhelmed by a spectacular and decorative art.
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African art is always confined to its "first art" component. The most recent exhibitions made Picasso and his contemporaries interact with statues or reliquaries, but never ever with African artists of their time ... It is as if contemporary African artists were not recognized as having any quality, influence or value in this highly strategic financial and cultural market.
However, as early as the 1930s, the first penetrations of European techniques and models into the African visual arts led to a first local awakening (known as "indigenous art").
In 1951, Pierre Lods created a painting workshop in Brazzaville. He does not impose any artistic rules on his pupils, asking them to give free rein to their creativity, spontaneity and tradition. The school of “Poto Poto”, one of the first artistic schools on the African continent, was born. The style Miké (colorful slender characters) will spread to all Africa.
Following the independence of Congo in 1960, Pierre Lods was called to Senegal by President Senghor to create, alongside Ida Ndiaye (one of the first great African artists known for his Tabaskis series) what will be called the “School Of Dakar”. Each student is introduced to the latest western artistic techniques, allowing him to explore new paths on new media that were not used because they were too expensive. The pupils of Iba Ndiaye, on one hand, will follow in the footsteps of the conceptual or abstract art. While those of Pierre Lods, will concentrate on the figuration of their traditions, dear to the poet and singer of the negritude President Senghor. These modern artists, Amadou BA, Amadou Seck, Diatta Seck, Chérif Thiam, Philippe Sène ... seen and praised by none less than Picasso, Soulages or Chagall, will constitute the prodigious pioneers of modern African art, still neglected today. They created the first African art “golden age”, thanks to the commitment of a president in love with arts and culture (30% of the state budget will be devoted to them!).
Collecting works of art is a rare practice in Africa (objects originally having a ritual or sacred function), promotional structures and museums having scarce means, the status of artist in Africa proves to be very complicated. Strong figures, supported by some patrons, nevertheless emerge: the Senegalese Ousmane Sow or Amadou Seck, Ghanaian El Anatsui, Congolese Chéri Samba, photographer Malick Sdibé, potter Seni Camara of South Africa Irma Stern and William Kentridge, Ethiopian-American Julie Mehretu, among others.
Various individual initiatives will emerge, such as the Pigozzi, Zinsu or Blachère Foundations, accumulating works by hundreds, to be displayed and valued.
For the past two or three years, it has become clear that there is a real media shudder and an early structuring of the modern and contemporary African art market.
Admittedly, it is a plural art that is very original and authentic because of its forms, its choice of colors, its often natural supports, its traditional and contemporary inspirations. From these works emerges a lot of vitality, humanity, rhythm and strength. Untouched by the trend effects and the decorative and mercantile inclinations of a western art that is still in the seeking, the African art revivifies, renews and gives a new breath to contemporary art.
Since 2013, a Contemporary African Art Fair called "1: 54" (1 continent, 54 countries) is organized in London, and recently in New York. The first edition of its French competitor AKAA (Also Known As Africa) took place at the end of 2016. South Africa is very active with the Joburg Art Fair and the Cape Town Art Fair.
An Africa Art Market Report has been published in 2015 which gives valuable benchmarks in terms of analysis of the contemporary and modern African art market. It also reveals that it is very much under-exploited and under-animated, with the notable exception of South Africa and of a few mainly western collectors.
As the economies of the African continent are growing, many modern and contemporary artists of high quality, as welle as local collectors are expected to emerge. The African art market is set to grow.
Let us hope that, after being denied for a long time, it will escape the speculative fever that the Chinese market has experienced. Wishing that it will develop in a long-term perspective and re-appropriation by local actors and collectors of their cultural and artistic heritage.
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Arte Povera was born in Italy in the late 1960s in response to the American way of life, and to the consumerist art such as pop art, characterized by overbidding, spectacular and overwhelming media-ism.
This group of artists, originating from the industrial city of Turin, were marked by social conflicts and the mercantilism of the art market. What prevails in their artistic expression is the natural, the instinct and the ephemeral.
According to the Italian art critic Germano Celant at the origin of the term, Arte povera is "an hymn to the elementary element, to the banal element, to nature, to man, fragment of spirit and body ".
Social and political manifesto, it is more an attitude, a behavior, a discipline rather than a movement, namely:
- a way of being and creating, giving priority to gesture, the creative process to the detriment of the finished object;
- a refusal to consider art as a product that can be appropriated and sacralized;
- a simple, even archaic, implementation of so-called "poor, rough, crude, natural materials (wood, coal, stones ...), often made of recovered objects ;
- the exhibition space is part of the installation;
- a poetic dimension and even a spiritual materialism forcing us to think about the mysteries of existence.
Frugal art, art of recovery or harvest, it is an essential expression, anchored in the real, with symbolic and poetic scope.
Artists of Arte povera go beyond the limits of sculpture or painting, beyond the framework, in order to exalt the real and develop a radical visual language. Numerous experiments in poor art will be carried out in other disciplines such as architecture ("Global tools", a counter-school of architecture and design rethinking social space in an ecological context), dance, cinema or music.
Arte Povera, originally an artistic guerrilla, based on a formal radicalism and an economy of means, has never been so timely.
Far from being a moment of cultural regression, it finds today many resonances and extensions in different non-ostentatious forms of art, anchored either in reality or in nature (art of the World, ecological art ...) which meat an increasingly public membership.
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