New report shows 61% of artists now find digital platforms more important than galleries

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New report shows 61% of artists now find digital platforms more important than galleries for selling their work

Artfinder’s annual Impact Report, published today, reveals that 61% of artists surveyed now find digital platforms, including social media, more important than galleries for sharing and selling their work. The report surveys 6,000 artists in over 100 countries registered with Artfinder, 85% of whom also exhibit with art galleries or museums.

61.3% find digital platforms, including social media, more important for sharing
and selling their work than galleries
● 63.8% have thought about sustainability in their art practice more this year
● 53.7% have been more influenced than usual by world events

James Earley is one such artist whose work has focused his attention closer to home this year. James’ hyperreal portraits of the disenfranchised, homeless people and war victims from Iraq and Yemen have led him to critical acclaim.

This year he has focussed his efforts on homeless people here in the UK, in London and his hometown of Southampton, as well as working on series of portraits of NHS staff and patients on the intensive care unit at St Bartholomew’s Hospital, London, which will be exhibited in their heritage centre as part of the hospital’s 900 year anniversary in July this year. A self-taught artist, James won first prize at the London Biennale in 2019 and he has now been selected to exhibit at Venice Biennale in 2022. He is also a past nominee of The BP Portrait Award.

James Earley is one such artist whose work has focused his attention closer to home this year. James’ hyperreal portraits of the disenfranchised, homeless people and war victims from Iraq and Yemen have led him to critical acclaim. This year he has focussed his efforts on homeless people here in the UK, in London and his hometown of Southampton, as well as working on series of portraits of NHS staff and patients on the intensive care unit at St Bartholomew’s Hospital, London, which will be exhibited in
their heritage centre as part of the hospital’s 900 year anniversary in July this year.

James Earley

A self-taught artist, James won first prize at the London Biennale in 2019 and he has now been selected to exhibit at Venice Biennale in 2022. He is also a past nominee of The BP Portrait Award.

James Earley is one such artist whose work has focused his attention closer to home this year. James’ hyperreal portraits of the disenfranchised, homeless people and war victims from Iraq and Yemen have led him to critical acclaim. This year he has focussed his efforts on homeless people here in the UK, in London and his hometown of Southampton, as well as working on series of portraits of NHS staff and patients on the intensive care unit at St Bartholomew’s Hospital, London, which will be exhibited in
their heritage centre as part of the hospital’s 900 year anniversary in July this year.

A self-taught artist, James won first prize at the London Biennale in 2019 and he has now been selected to exhibit at Venice Biennale in 2022. He is also a past nominee of The BP Portrait Award.

James says: “Before the pandemic 90% of my income came from exhibitions and art fairs, and now it has swung the other way with the majority of my income coming from online sales including Artfinder, who sold my first ever painting online.”

Artfinder helped more artists than ever make a living in 2020, with 88% of artists saying Artfinder contributed to an increase in their income. The site paid out a total of $8.3m to artists in 2020, more than doubling 2019 sales. Since Artfinder launched in 2013, it has paid over $34.3m to artists in over 100 countries.

The report also details Artfinder’s sustainability work, including planting one tree for every artwork sold through the site, totalling 56,739 trees since November 2020. The site has become a founding member of the Million Tree Pledge, committing to planting 1 million trees by 2030.

Michal Szczesny, CEO of Artfinder comments:

“Although 2020 was such a difficult year for many, I’m so proud to say that Artfinder has come out of it a stronger, better community. I believe that the purpose of all business should be to do something good in this world and it’s been so exciting this year to see that so many of our new customers and artists agree. I think in this last year we’ve really seen people become more interested in supporting sustainable and ethical businesses and we’ve also seen a shift to online which has helped change this
perception of online as the ‘poor relation’ in the art world. Both of those changes have created a kind of ‘perfect storm’ for Artfinder that has seen our new customer growth at over 100% year on year and it’s a trend we look forward to growing further in the years to come.”

The largest online marketplace for art, Artfinder is a VC funded startup, backed by the investors behind Spotify and Zoopla. Investors include Wellington Partners, Oxford Capital, Cambridge Angels, plus private investors in the UK, the US and Switzerland. In August 2019, Artfinder became the art world’s first B Corp, solidifying its commitment to its values to support artists and make art affordable and accessible.

©2021 Artfinder, James Earley

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