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Art & Culture

Phillips Lauched Dropshop: A Direct-from-Artist Sales Platform Revolutionizing Art E-Commerce

  • Marilyn Walters
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  • August 22, 2023
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  • 3 minute read
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Phillips Lauched Dropshop: A Direct-from-Artist Sales Platform Revolutionizing Art E-Commerce

Phillips introduces Dropshop, a groundbreaking platform designed to bridge artists and collectors. A step towards a more direct and transparent art market. 

Key Takeaways
  • Dropshop, a digital platform launched by Phillips, aims to directly connect living artists with collectors, offering limited-edition artworks and collectibles.
  • Australian-born, Brooklyn-based artist Cj Hendry is the first to feature her work on the platform, starting with 100 bronze inflatable crowns.
  • Dropshop pioneers a unique model, promising artists a 3 percent royalty from resales through Phillips, a novel initiative in the auction house industry.

Phillips Embarks on E-Commerce Journey with Dropshop, A Direct-from-Artist Sales Platform

Phillips, a prominent name in the auction industry, is delving into the world of e-commerce with the launch of Dropshop. This innovative digital platform is conceived as a space where limited-edition artworks and collectibles, commissioned directly from living artists, are offered straight to collectors.

Cj Hendry Pioneers the New Platform

When the platform makes its debut on August 20, Cj Hendry, a 35-year-old Australian-born, Brooklyn-based artist, will be the first to display her commissioned works there. Hendry, renowned for her captivating drawings and sculptures, has accumulated a robust online following. She is set to release one hundred bronze inflatable crowns through Dropshop, although prices for these pieces remain under wraps.

A Groundbreaking Resale Royalties Model

One of the compelling aspects of Dropshop is Phillips’ promise to artists: a 3 percent share from any resales of their art via the platform. This is a significant departure from standard practice as resale royalties are seldom a feature in auction houses. This is Phillips making a bold attempt to set a new industry standard.

The Evolution of Art Sales in a Digital World

As observed by Christine Miele, the newly appointed Phillips retail sales director, the market dynamics for art sales have been visibly shifting. She noted that more artists are beginning to favor self-representation, a trend accelerated by the pandemic. With collectors growing more comfortable purchasing artworks from emerging artists via social media platforms, this transformation has been significant.

“In developing the platform, we wanted to rethink how the traditional model for an auction house might be expanded,” Miele explained.

Before joining Phillips, Miele was at the helm of the Kehinde Wiley Shop, a merchandise platform launched by artist Kehinde Wiley in 2020, designed to raise funds for a Dakar-based nonprofit.

Dropshop in Comparison to Other Models

While Phillips’ Dropshop is a fresh entrant, it isn’t without competitors. Existing platforms with similar digital models include Avant Arte and Exhibition A, founded in 2021 and 2010 respectively. However, where Dropshop distinguishes itself is in its strong backing by a major auction house and its unique commitment to artist resale royalties.

When queried about the future direction of Dropshop, a Phillips spokesperson hinted at an exclusive strategy. The house is eyeing collaboration with “blue-chip,” “self-represented” artists, though specifics remain confidential for now.

In conclusion, with the unveiling of Dropshop, Phillips is not just dipping its toes into the e-commerce realm; it is making a splash with a platform that addresses the changing needs of artists and collectors alike. As it stands, Dropshop is poised to challenge the traditional structures of art commerce, paving the way for a more direct, transparent, and equitable market.

Marilyn Walters

Marilyn Walters

Marilyn Walters is a seasoned news journalist with over two years of experience in the field. Known for her investigative reporting and insightful analysis, Marilyn has covered significant global events with an objective lens. Her relentless pursuit of truth and dedication to journalistic integrity have established her as a respected voice in today's dynamic news landscape.

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