Today, Electric Objects—the digital art platform whose product, the EO1, takes the form of a computer and screen you can purchase for $399 and then load with art when connected to the Internet—announced the Art Club Fund, a new $100,000 initiative created to, according to a release from the company, “further the company’s commitment to commissioning new works of digital art in 2016.” All of the money will go toward new commissions for Arts Club, Electric Objects’ collection of new and original art made for the screen.
In related news, tomorrow the company will start the third round of their Art Club Open Call, an open-submission program that in the past has had over 1,000 applicants. This round, they will select 30 artists from the pool to be featured in Arts Club.
In the past, Electric Objects has worked with artists including Björk, Ai Weiwei, and the band YACHT. “We want to bring digital art into the home and we want to make it accessible,” Electric Objects founder Jake Levine told me today over the phone alongside cofounder Zoë Salditch. Levine told me that the screen is currently in “a few thousand homes” globally.
Electric Objects posts four new collections per week. Over the past year, they have worked with over 100 artists on a few hundred original pieces. The company pays a flat $500 fee per collection to artists for rights to works. “Digital art has struggled with ways to be collectible,” Salditch said. “A lot of artists are interested in supporting what the new technology can provide to them.”
Although he was aware that the pricing scheme might not work for all digital artists, Levine told me that it was important that the company had a “very transparent commissioning structure.” He said he was open to more flexibility on pricing down the road as the company develops. “The longer-term vision here is that we’re creating a marketplace,” Levine said.