Why art? What is it about the space that drew you in?
As an art director, you gradually develop an eye for good art and design. I wanted to use that skill to define my success by making an impact using what I could build. Once I was clear on that, it was about building something to make quality art accessible and affordable to a new generation of art lovers. Art is the purest form of expression of the social and cultural landscape of our times. I think, at some level, it was about changing the perception of design in India. It was about increasing the value and appreciation of art, starting with homegrown talent.
Please tell us about yourself, your background, your relationship with art and how you founded the company?
I didn't go to art school. I can't draw. I can't sketch. I can't paint. I can build. I can curate. I can sell. As an art director at Ogilvy, I've had the opportunity to work with some of the most talented artists, designers, illustrator and photographers in the industry. This gave me perspective into a disorganized community that deserved better. What started off a small project two years ago has grown into an art movement in the form of a curated platform to discover quality art by Indian artists from around the world.
What is the objective and vision of the company?
Art, without distribution and discovery, moves nobody. Our objective is to use technology to make art accessible. My vision is to make Art&Found an art lifestyle brand. We plan to achieve this with online and offline presence via an online marketplace, events, blog, magazine, collaborations, curation and styling projects.
When it comes to the art market in India, how has it changed over the past few years?
It is a good time for art, an industry that has otherwise been under appreciated and undervalued. As millennials become key decision makers and spenders, we're seeing this shift where art that is not expensive and intimidating is competing for their interest against a dominating fine art industry. Initiatives like online marketplaces and offline flea markets are constantly exposing new forms of art to a younger audience. What this is doing is converting that intrinsic value into high monetary value. Art in India will receive the value it deserves. And I think we'll be there very soon, if not already.
Are people more comfortable buying art online?
Convenience is at the core of online retail for consumers. They way we can price the art online makes it an inexpensive and less intimidating experience for shoppers. This has caught the attention of a lot of people who are who art lovers hunting for affordable art.
Tell us about how you style a space, what things do you take into consideration?
We start with a free-of-charge site visit and consultation. We understand the company philosophy and its stakeholders. From there, we go back to the thinking room to come up with a theme. We identify areas where we can curate art in various forms from murals to frames to fabrication. The idea is to transform a space from basic interiors to a decor job that fits the company's culture.
Art is so subjective, how do you understand what a customer wants?
For the online platform, our job is to curate a range of quality art for consumers to choose from. We provide them tools to filter by size, price, style, medium, and even colour. We've curated the best so anyone can become a collector, without spending like one. For our offline styling and curation projects, we start with a free visit and consultation. We understand the company's philosophy and its stakeholders. Then we come up with a theme, identify the areas to curate various art forms from wall murals to frames to fabrication. The idea is to transform basic interiors into a vibrant decor job that fits the company culture.
If someone is looking to do up their home, how can art change their space?
Art adds character and brings a certain vibe to the space that projects your personality. People aren't receptive to art because most of the times they don't connect with the subject matter, that's why you hear people saying they don't understand art. We try to fill that void by bringing out the art of our times – something the young generation of art lovers can relate to and want in the spaces they live and work in. For offices, there was a study last year that art in the workplace can have a direct impact on employee productivity and well-being. The idea is that you feel very different in a space that's blank as opposed to being in a space that has art and colour. And what we're also saying is that it doesn't need to be expensive.
Our design team will get back to you shortly.