Twenty-four-year-old British artist Henry Yang is offering his paintings for sale in what he calls, “fractional ownership.” Through a digital marketplace dealing in blockchain cryptocurrency, Henry invites multiple shareholders, including himself, to get in on collecting. He recently sold his painting, Arabidopsis Thaliana (Thale Cress), for £3,000 and kept 10% of the ownership. He says it helps waylay the loss he feels when letting them go. Now, Henry can co-loan Arabidopsis Thaliana out for a charge and disperse the dividends to his co-shareholders.
While I ponder Henry’s enterprise, may I perhaps interest you in a Monet? Picked up at auction for 6.3 million USD, Coup de vent (1881) is being offered at 20 dollars a share by 38-year-old collector Scott Lynn through his new venture, Masterworks. We won’t be able to look at it, though — after we buy Coup, for a 2% administration fee, Scott will keep it in storage. Down the road, we’ll vote on when it’s time to sell, when Scott will take a 20% percent commission from any profit.
First, we’ll need to figure out how to turn our hard-earned art dollars into cryptocurrency on the blockchain. Once we have our Ethereum tokens, we’ll be able to sell or trade our shares of any painting we collectively buy. Maybe 1,300 of us could get together on Warhol’s 1 Colored Marilyn (reversal series) (1979). She’s selling for $200 a share for a 0.076% portion. “We focus on works that are in the several million dollar area, because that’s where we see the greatest area of potential appreciation with the lowest degree of risk,” says Scott. As a collector, investor and the founder of Masterworks, he says that, aside from tech start-ups, investing in paintings has offered him the highest returns.
PS: “It makes me smile just to think about it. They’re talking about having an exhibition for all the communally owned artworks, and I will absolutely bring people there and be able to say ‘I own a piece of that painting.’ ” (Cheryl Ellzysmith, artist and Masterworks investor)
“Being good in business is the most fascinating kind of art.” (Andy Warhol)
Esoterica: As the internet has expanded access to art, so has it exploded an interest in it. Worldwide museum attendance is skyrocketing, says Steven Murphy, art advisor and former CEO of Christie’s. “Smartphones, ipads, social media, online — is the most significant technological thing to affect and benefit the art world since the invention of the telephone,” says Steven. The internet is for artists, he says, what the transistor radio was for the Beatles. “The great art has been there all along, but now it’s got a global platform.” Fractional ownership investment companies like Masterworks believe they’re part of a great democratization by inviting everyone to collect. They also see art shares as a benefit to emerging artists by allowing them to hold onto a portion of early works while their prices rise in the marketplace. “Art collectors are pretty insignificant in the scheme of things,” said Charles Saatchi. “What matters and survives is the art.”
“If a patron buys from an artist who needs money, the patron then makes himself equal to the artist; he is building art into the world; he creates.” (Ezra Pound)
Join me for a 5-day outdoor painting workshop vacation on the beautiful South Shore of Nova Scotia.
My workshops offer a good balance between friendly interchange and education. They will be a relaxed, yet informative experience for all participants.
You will learn how to see like an artist, what to look for and how to understand what you see – drawing as it applies to painting, the importance of values (more important than colour), edges, colour temperatures and more. I have developed a few exercises that will help you better understand the different aspects, by isolating them.
Days will include demonstrations, personal instruction, exercises, encouragement and positive critiques for personal growth.
Home location: 8 Fort Point Road, LaHave
Call to reserve your spot today! (902) 693-2093