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A new app has been launched that hopes to streamline the art market for prospective collectors. CURATE, which is available for free on iPhone, iPad, and Android devices, responds to one of the most fundamental questions when purchasing a work for one’s home: “How will it look on my wall?” The answer is simple, all the user has to do is take images of the room and artwork in question, input measurements for each, and the app will provide a simulated and scaled visual of the work in situ.
Several blue-chip dealers have already signed up as “Member Galleries” of the app–David Zwirner, Galerie Perrotin, Kavi Gupta, Michael Rosenfeld Gallery, Rhona Hoffman Gallery, and Richard Gray Gallery, among others–so collectors can even select works that have been virtually uploaded. Member Galleries will be able to customize private showings for select clients, discretely deciding which collectors see specific works. And Thursday through Sunday (September 18–21), CURATE will partner with EXPO Chicago, allowing participating galleries and collectors at the fair to connect and streamline the acquisitions process.
Sisters Cari Sacks and Patti Bartelstein created the app to simplify their own experience with the art market. Bartelstein, a photographer known for her murky and ethereal images, would often help her sister, a collector and trustee of Chicago’s Museum of Contemporary Art, in deciding her latest purchase by spending hours Photoshopping works onto her walls. After one of these painstaking stints, Sacks said, “we just sort of looked at each other and said, ‘there should be an App for this.’” Months later, in collaboration with Eight Bit Studios and a number of leading galleries, CURATE came to fruition.
The app is downloadable for free for individual users at the App store and Google Play play.google.com, and 50 percent of profits from member galleries will go toward graduate scholarships at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago.