Since 2007, Jen Bekman’s 20×200 has become one of the leaders in the affordable art arena. Her business has printed and sold more than 200,000 collectible prints by more than 200 artists. ArtInfo writes that the affordable-yet-collectible photography market appears to be heating up:
[…] 20×200 founder
Jen Bekman […] works directly with artists, including established figures like William Wegman and Lawrence Weiner. She splits revenue with them down the middle after allowing for production costs, just as a traditional dealer would. On 20×200, prices range from $24 for an 8-by-10-inch print from an edition of 20 by an emerging artist to $10,000 for an 80-by-60-inch print by photographer Christian Chaize in an edition of two. “When I started, people were very skeptical about how selling a $24 print could be profitable,” Bekman recalls. “In fact a significant portion of our business—about 15 percent—comes from purchases over $500.” All told, Bekman has brought in approximately $15 million in cumulative revenue. Although several years in the red followed a profitable first year, 20×200 anticipates making a profit again in 2013.
Back in February, 20×200 sold $100,000 worth of photography by William Wegman — in a single day!
As the Battle for the Online Art World Sharpens, How the Players Are Adapting [ArtInfo via PotB]
For their project “Museum Anatomy,” Chiang Mai, Thailand-based artists Chadwick Gray and Laura Spector recreated and photographed old paintings from around the world on a human body instead of a canvas.
Check out this unique necklace created by artist Ashley Gilreath last year. Called “I Am Who They Were,” the piece is designed to represent Gilreath’s memories of climbing up the stairway in her grandparents’ house — a stairway lined with family photographs.
Getting your work copied, ripped off and/or stolen is a sad reality in the digital age. In fact, earlier this year we shared a website dedicated to ousting copycats and were shocked at how much copyright infringement was really out there. But where finding your work on another “photographer’s” website would be startling enough, how would you feel if you found it while browsing a major art show?
That’s exactly what happened to artist Jason Levesque this last weekend. While walking around Art Basel in Miami Beach, Levesque noticed that three of the pieces presented by the Robert Fontaine Gallery looked a bit more than familiar.
Every few months, it seems, a fine art photograph is sold at auction for an astronomical price and then takes its place among the world’s most expensive photos. The price tags are large, but pale in comparison to the hundreds of millions of dollar shelled out for the world’s priciest paintings.
One reason for the price discrepancy may be due to the fact that art collectors are more wary of fine art photography’s long term value, and the fact that any reprints of the same images made in the future could drastically affect the value of their investments. However, a new report has found that confidence in the photography market is steadily rising, meaning we’ll likely see prices continue to balloon.
Here’s a photo project so profound that it might make you weep (you might also cry for other reasons). Artist Will Vincent has a project titled “Two Thousand, One Hundred and Ninety One.” His artist statement is a single sentence: “Every day for six years I took a photo of myself with the lense cap on.”
The National Gallery in London, the world’s 4th most visited art museum, is currently holding its first major exhibition of photography, titled, “Seduced by Art: Photography Past and Present.” Andrew Graham-Dixon of The Telegraph has published a review of the show, and has some strong opinions on photography’s place in the art world:
The truth is that very few photographers have ever produced images with the weight of thought and feeling found in the greatest paintings. The camera is certainly an artistic tool, and photos can certainly be works of art. But can they be works of art of the same order as paintings? Modern critical orthodoxy would say yes. But the real answer is no. Photography lacks the depth and heft, the thinking sense of touch, that painting possesses.
That is why the greatest images of the last 150 years– the images people argue about, contest, return to again and again – are not photographs but paintings
Brian Sewell over at The London Evening Standard has written up a lengthier, but equally critical, review.
Seduced by Art: Seven magazine review [The Telegraph via POTB]
Image credits: Photograph by Maisie Broadhead and painting by Thomas Gainsborough
In 1997, the Minneapolis College of Art and Design held an art sale to give student and alumni artists an opportunity to offer their creations to art collectors. They offered around 1,000 pieces by 86 different artists, including prints by photographers. Since then, the MCAD Art Sale has exploded in popularity.
This year the organizers are hoping to sell thousands of artworks by hundreds of artists at a rate of 7 pieces per minute. The sales will add to the $1,875,000 that has been paid out to artists through the sales over the years.
The debate rages on: should appropriated Google Street View photographs be considered art? There are quite a few artists and photographers out there who think it should be. Photographer Michael Wolf was awarded Honorable Mention for his curated screenshots at the World Press Photo 2011. Photographer Aaron Hobson takes screenshots and turns them into gorgeous panoramic photos. Jon Rafman’s screenshots were picked for an exhibition at London’s Saatchi Gallery.
Now here’s another case that might cause a lot more head-scratching: photographer Doug Rickard‘s Street View screenshots have been selected for the permanent collection at the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art.
“BYOB” is an initialism that’s readily understood by college students who party. To artist Rafaël Rozendaal, however, it means something entirely different. In 2010, Rozendaal launched Bring Your Own Beamer, a series of novel “open source” art exhibitions in which participants were asked to bring their own beamers (AKA projectors). The recipe for the concept is extremely simple: find a venue with plenty of wall space (and outlets), invite a bunch of artists and art-lovers, and have images projected all over the walls for everyone to enjoy.