“The biggest way technology can disrupt art is by providing exposure for the artists. Right now to find emerging artists you’d have to know their specific name to search for them on Google or gallery hop every weekend in Chelsea. Artsicle helps the artists find exposure earlier and make the money they need so they can continue to be artists.”
-Artiscle Co-Founder Alexis Tryon
What is Artsicle? It’s a disruptive platform showcasing emerging artists to the world with a rental model for everyman art lovers. By joining Artsicle, users like you and me, who maybe don’t have time to keep up with the modern art scene and gallivant around Chelsea, can discover today’s top emerging artists. Users can rent original artwork for their homes for just $50 per month or start creating their own collections with prices as ranging from $500-$1,500.
Artsicle’s slick, new site launches today featuring 20 new artists, fresh out of their MFA programs, to add to the 10 or so established artists already on the site.
Aside from the heavy amount of inbound requests, Tryon finds fresh new talent through open studios and referrals, and “curates the artists more than the pieces.” In total, the new site includes 300 pieces in its collection. The original works are insured, but many of them can only be rented by New Yorkers, for now.
CTO Scott Carleton, a former nuclear engineer and CEO Tryon, an Ivy league educated art historian founded Artsicle in September 2010. The bootstrapped startup works out of NYC’s Dogpatch Labs and now includes Nicholas Greenfield, a front end developer and collage artist and sculptor Alfredo Achecar, who passionately sought out Artsicle to offer any help he could.
Artisicle is a win for artists who don’t want to sell their work on Etsy or Ebay. N.B. Etsy averages 600,000 pieces a day and the furthest you can sort your search to is “art.” While artists are slowly becoming more comfortable with being online, the membership model adds exclusivity without being really exclusive. Artsicle currently has 750 members from its beta period.
In comparison to Art.sy, a popular New York City startup that focuses on the high-end art market, Tyron sees Artsicle as its everyman version. “We are targeting people who wouldn’t have thought of themselves as art collectors,” explains Tyron.
Art.sy is similar to TurningArt, one of our recent Best of Boston Startups, which also rents art to consumers a la Netflix style. The difference is that TurningArt rents out prints, but your rental dollars go towards an art purchase, which Artsicle does not offer in favor of keeping its artists well-fed.
I had the pleasure of interviewing Alexis Tryon and Alfredo Achecar last week in Dogpatch Labs. Watch this video interview to hear more about technology’s disruption of modern art.
For real-time updates on the art market, follow Artsicle on Twitter.
Read next: TopDish: A new social network for foodies