How Is Art and Culture on the Internet Impact on Wider Social Issues? Term Paper

Pages: 6 (2084 words)  ·  Style: MLA  ·  Bibliography Sources: 6  ·  File: .docx  ·  Topic: Art  (general)

¶ … Internet and Fine Art

What is the difference between art and culture, especially when it appears on the Internet? Answer: Nothing. Art becomes part of the culture; the more it is seen and accepted. The culture is also reflected in Art. Visual images that are appearing on the web reflect the great diversity of styles, artists and showcases for artwork. Whether it is animated or a fine old painting; you can find it or see it alongside pop-ups for car dealers on the Internet. How has the Internet changed the creation, dissemination and selling of art and culture? It began some time back, when a few sites offered to exhibit artists' work in thumbnail size and as larger, detailed images upon demand. Then, as today, artists were asked for a fee to exhibit on the Internet. Some pay happily and some do not pay at all to have their work appear on someone else's screen as they are surfing the Web (if they have and maintain their own website). The main thing that is happening is that fine art is appearing daily on everyone's computer screen.

A client can learn where to buy art on the Internet from Art Daily, a daily visual arts news magazine that tells viewers about the latest exhibitions in every city and about art fairs being held (in Miami Beach, Bologna, and Palm Beach this and next month), by clicking on the toolbar on the left side of the screen..

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Art on EBay is the most popular of all website on which to display art objects for sale. The entry field for "Selling Art on the Internet" on EBay, includes the following categories:

Digital Art, Drawings: (Antique - Pre-1900, Modern -- 1900-49) and Contemporary -- 1950 -Now) Folk Art, Mixed Media (Antique - Pre-1900, Modern -- 1900-49) and Contemporary -- 1950 -Now), Paintings (Antique - Pre-1900, Modern -- 1900-49) and Contemporary -- 1950 -Now), Photographic Images, Posters, Prints (Antique - Pre-1900, Modern -- 1900-49) and Contemporary -- 1950 -Now), Sculpture and Carvings, Self-Representing Artists, Other Art and Wholesale Lots (Paintings, Photographic Images, Prints, Posters and Other).

Term Paper on How Is Art and Culture on the Internet Impact on Wider Social Issues? Assignment

There are thousands of works represented on EBay; 53,557 Paintings were found under that category, 138,848 under Prints, 2,094 under Digital Art, 7,332 under Folk Art, 11,522 under Photographic Images, 2,467 under Mixed Media, 46,252 under Posters, 12,161 under Sculpture and Carvings, 13,758 under Self-Representing Artists, 4,440 under Drawings, 4,029 under Other Art, and 747 under Wholesale Lots.

In the Paintings category, a cursory look at the prices at which art is selling shows a range from $1.00 to $885.00. Only two pieces were listed at a price above $150, and these were $850 for (Artist Unknown) an "Antique Old Master Style Oil Painting on Wood Board" dated pre-1900. Only 143 people had viewed this and only 1 bid was made ($850). The asking price was $1,995.00. The highest bid viewed was for $885 for a 1950 French Impressionist oil painting of a Paris street, signed L. (Louis) Dali. The description also said "O/C Well Listed Artist Great Condition Original Framed.

The majority of those selling were "old" paintings. One painting boasted about the old frame it was in, which was in terrible shape, with the plaster "carving" falling off. It had close-ups of the frame. The painting itself was of an "Early American Nude."

One large (4 feet by 2 feet) contemporary oil painting had 17 bids on it for a mere total of $77.00.

If one were to try to sell art on EBay, one might not have very much luck, since the majority of the over 53,000 works had no bids on them at all. The average bid was $10.00, considering most bids were for $1.00 and there were a very few for up to $100.00.

Self-Representing Artists on the Internet who have their own sites have experienced about the same luck as those advertising on EBay. There may some visitors who stumble onto one's site, but then they do not purchase anything. The only ones who buy from artists' sites are those who are directed by the artist to go look at what is available. The Internet site then functions as the stacks, where the artists' paintings are stored and rummaged through by visitors. Some may come away with what they consider a "find," and others look, but don't buy. Art galleries find most of their visitors are "Lookie-Loos," not serious art purchasers. It is the same on the Internet, with the exception that there are many more visitors who stumble into a site by accident and quickly remove themselves from it, as they may not have meant to be there.

Art Auctions on the Internet, such as HousingWorksAuctions, com, LeslieHindman.com, HeritageAuctions.com and Artbyus.com have registered artists who they exhibit with this format. The artists pay to be placed in an auction, but most of the works auctioned are prints. "Prints" in this context means one of multiples of thousands printed on a printing press, usually lithographic or offset, of the same quality paper and printing as a film poster. There, of course, are legitimate original, limited edition, hand-made prints available, but they are few and far between. A brief overview of the thousands of "Auction Houses" listed on Google, feature a few legitimate works of art, such as a bronze of Suri Cruise's First Poop, by Daniel Edwards, Sculptor. This may sell simply for the celebrity content. Unfortunately, a few well-done, hand-sculpted, bronze sculptures will be overlooked in the process.

Selling Art on the Internet, by Marques Vickers, a California artist, describes how the artist can mount their own website (after learning website design), generate traffic to their website and cultivate media exposure. The "pay for clicks" describes how, if an artist has more visitors to their website, they pay for it to "agent companies" who generate visitors to their specific site. There are also merchant affiliate programs, self-publishing virtual and portfolio galleries. The author talks about auction sites, as well, the most popular way for an artist to get their work on the web. Directed toward the individual artist, the author believes that the Internet is the way that artwork will be distributed in the future. Though nothing is as good as seeing the actual work on display, artwork can actually be enhanced to look better than it actually does, if one knows how to manipulate the programs that help put their work out there on the web.

Artists, Vickers maintains, are feeling a new sense of empowerment as they learn how to market their art themselves, rather than depending upon the traditional institutions of the gallery and cultivating clients. The artist has sold his work in galleries and has attended trade shows internationally, but his website, launched in November of 1999, has earned awards for design and content. He earns his living mostly by conducting seminars on selling art on the Internet for visual artists for the U.S. Small Business Administration. (Vickers,

ArtBusiness.com advises those who think about selling art on the Internet to think twice:

The internet is a pretty wild and untamed arena as far as selling art goes and unless you're anything less than fully on top of the market, think twice. In addition to knowing what your art is worth and how much you want to sell it for, you also must be able to show it to interested parties, mail it out on approval if necessary, and get paid in full if you sell it. This can be difficult when dealing with people who you've never met and who may live hundreds or even thousands of miles away. (Bamberger, para. 2)

This website warns potential sellers that some dealers and collectors spend a lot of time prowling the Internet looking for unsuspecting sellers who under-price their work. Some pirate the work by asking for details and "selling" it somewhere else. There are legitimate art dealers online, but there are also false ones, as well. Knowing the dealers well and the business of art well helps artists to sell their art at the price it should bring, without losing it or being cheated out of the true selling price or worse, losing the art altogether.

ArtBusiness.com advises artists to request references, if they are choosing a site already up on the web that sells art, to pick a site that only takes a commission and has a secure transaction system, and to make a personal contact before proceeding with sales. If the artist is putting up their own website on the Internet, they should be able to collect the money themselves by using a well-regarded transferring agent, to ship the artwork securely and to keep records of all details (Vickers, 3)

The ArtsJournal.com lists articles about selling art online. For instance, "Online Art Sales," an article in The Scotsman on 4 Feb. 2001, said that Cyber art sales are going well in the UK, claiming a "huge upturn in sales of contemporary work, slashing the cost… [END OF PREVIEW] . . . READ MORE

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