Searching the vastness of the web, sometimes you find yourself something completely unexpected. A company that aims to really do things in a different manner in the art world, not only as a pompous statement, but really identifying an opportunity and acting upon it. The art world has been noticeably slow in incorporating new technologies and mentalities, but there is a whole new generation of entrepreneurs that are pushing the envelope onto innovation.
From this desire to innovate, Feral Horses is born. It’s been in development for almost 3 years, and finally saw the light of day a couple of weeks ago. This company approaches joint parts of investment, crowdfunding, and art collecting into a unique Frankenstein art model. To better understand this unique approach, Francesco Bellanca, the company’s CEO, explained to us a bit of where they got the idea.
“The art investment industry is growing really fast but there is no structure, no market, and no rules. So there’s no real opportunity and the art investors are just evolving in the same place as the art collectors. And because they don’t have any structure, they end up damaging the art market a lot, as in art flippers, acquiring pieces at galleries and trying to sell them as fast as possible at auctions, to make a quick profit.”
With this problem in sight, they knew that there was an opportunity to explore “art has always been an asset and if you want to consider it as an investment, why not? but let’s create some rules, and let’s make a space for the artist, that was our motto from the beginning”
After an initial phase of investigation, meeting with artists, going to galleries and interviewing players in the art world to understand the viability of their approach, their idea is based on the idea that a lot of artists have huge followings, but a large part of that fan base can not afford to purchase pieces by those artists they like. But, on the other hand, buying a share of that painting would be totally viable, allowing the wide public to support the work of the artist.
Then we had a really amazing talk with an Italian artist, that said: “My problem right now is that I have a huge fan base of people actually supporting me and through this visibility, I was able of those to succeeded getting into galleries. But these people can’t afford my work, they can’t interact with my work because they can’t afford it”
Well by putting everything together. We realized we need a trading platform. We need an art trading platform that would be good for investors. We need an art trading platform for artists where they can keep shares of their work and be able to trade them and we need an art trading platform to lower the entry age and erase this mentality that investing in art is something reserved to the elites, it shouldn’t be.
With this in mind the foundation for Feral Horses was ready. A place where real art lovers could buy shares of a painting for reasonable prices, allowing them to support the artists and get income thru their investment, when the artpiece get’s rented to corporate partners. Each art piece is split into a thousand shares and each investor can buy between 0,01% and 20% of them, while the artist has the possibility to maintain the ownership of a percentage of shares of his/her work too.
This approach ensures that even art enthusiasts with limited funds are able to participate in the art world and support the careers of artists they admire, and with time obtain profit through dividends or future resale of their shares. Of course, some people in the art world didn’t completely accept their new business model while trying to disrupt, it’s very common to receive backfire from people that have grown accustomed to their current position, especially in an industry as traditionalist as the art world.
Even people that wouldn’t use our service notice the value of having a specific place to do art trading, it is happening anyway, people are considering art as an asset. We can pretend it doesn’t exist and we let it have a very negative impact or we deal with it and create a fair place to do so.
Feral Horses aims to open up the doors of the art world, give VIP access to the greater public and demystify an industry that has been traditionally cloaked by an aura of mystery and elitism. New technologies are generating the possibility of more direct and transparent relationships with art, and this one great example of that.