Archival’s digital document expands the use of the blockchain ecosystem

Arkual is a blockchain startup focused on the purchase, sale and authentication of art, backed by key stakeholders in the art and technology world such as Art Basel, MCH Group, PCG X and Luma Foundation. Launched in November 2022 based in Zurich, Berlin and London, the startup aims to create a digital ecosystem that addresses several pressing needs in the art world, such as increased transparency, greater agency for artists and exclusive payment terms. To achieve this, Arcual offers various services such as an internal sales room and an integrated payment system. feature, which allows organizations outside the arts to engage with artworks throughout their life cycle.

Deepfake EdenInstallation shot #35, 2023 Image: Courtesy of Arcual @Art Basel, Basel

With Digital Dossier, the blockchain ecosystem will enable artists to add relevant information for a work, including its Certificate of Authenticity (CoA), preliminary sketches, installation guidelines, and art exhibition histories, among other files related to documentation, exhibition, and resale. Piece. As a preview, it will enable companies in the art market to establish and maintain evidence more easily and to a higher standard than was previously possible. Archival’s digital dossier was launched ahead of the startup’s involvement at the Zurich Art Weekend and Art Basel. June 2023, Basel, Switzerland. Arcual has launched a unique sculptural exhibition to open up the digital archive. Deepfake Eden (2023) by British ceramist Phoebe Cummings, who creates temporary sculptures and environments from raw, unfired clay.

'Deepfake Eden' Installation Shot #35, 2023 |  Phoebe Cummings |  Deepfake Eden |  STIRWorld
Deepfake EdenInstallation shot #35, 2023 Image: Courtesy of Arcual @Art Basel, Basel

Bernadine Brocker Wieder, CEO of Arcual, discusses the concept of digital documentation with STIR, „I’ve always seen art as a form of storytelling. Every artwork involves its creation, ownership and exhibition. Unfortunately, this story is often misplaced. The artwork moves from one owner to another. .This loss is equally regrettable to the dealer, the collector and the artist.

 'Antediluvian Swag', 2016 |  Phoebe Cummings |  STIRWorld
Antediluvian swag2016 Image: Sylvain Deleu, courtesy of Arcual

The files attached to the digital document follow the artwork on its journey as it changes hands between users and, as Wieder explains to STIR, this new function is to improve the ownership and authentication experience of an artwork, „adding value for the future. An easier and safer way to access.” He notes that it has already attracted the attention of many collectors and members of the contemporary artist community.

 Detail from 'Nocturne', 2016 |  Phoebe Cummings |  STIRWorld
Details from Nocturne2016 Image: Courtesy of Archival

Outlining his craft, Cummings tells STIR, „Time and nature are a constant interest of mine. The sculptural practice, and the brief physical duration of the work, stands in stark contrast to the intensity of detail and labor invested in the art-making process.”

 Work in progress by Phoebe Cummings during her Ceramics Fellowship at Camden Arts Center 2012-13 |  Phoebe Cummings |  STIRWorld
Phoebe Cummings’ work in progress during her 2012-13 Ceramics Fellowship at Camden Arts Center Image: Courtesy of Archival

Cummings created his sculpture at Archival’s booth at Art Basel, where visitors can view the artist’s work. Performance of the event. Wieder looks back at the art exhibition, telling STIR, “With this new feature, Cummings pinpointed how his artwork came to be and outlined how it might be better presented in the world in the future. In order to protect his vision, we used Arcual to drive and own the work Deepfake Eden Even beyond its inevitable degradation.” Digital Dossier users can view images of the work over time, and gain access to provenance and condition reports highlighting its origin and current state. This is in addition to other documents Cummings may choose to share, such as his resume.

 'Mirror Me', 2022 |  Phoebe Cummings |  STIRWorld
I am the mirror2022 Image: Courtesy of Archival

Regarding the digital document, Cummings tells STIR, „The technology is very interesting to me because I’ve been creating temporary artworks for the past 18 years.” Increasingly, he concerns himself with the question of legacy in relation to his pieces, and feels that he has found the answer through archival.

 'Deepfake Eden' Installation Shot #53, 2023 |  Phoebe Cummings |  Deepfake Eden |  STIRWorld
Deepfake EdenInstallation shot #53, 2023 Image: Courtesy of Arcual @Art Basel, Basel

The British artist recognized Arcual’s Digital Dossier for its ability to amplify storytelling around the topic of artists’ artistic practices and to easily outline how they feel their work should be best presented. Cummings says this new feature supports the collection of ephemeral works he creates, and allows him to build an archive around an artist’s practice, something he holds dear.

 Deepfake Eden Installation Shot #7, 2023 |  Phoebe Cummings |  Deepfake Eden |  STIRWorld
Deepfake EdenInstallation shot #7, 2023 Image: Courtesy of Arcual @Art Basel, Basel

Admittedly, there is some talk going on around the benefits that blockchain technology actually offers artists. When asked whether or not she worries about this suspicion, Wider highlights what she sees as a paradoxical indifference. In light of its interest in the avant garde, the contemporary art world is embracing and embracing new technologies in the digital age.

 Portrait photography by Bernadine Broecker Weider, 2023 |  STIRWorld
Portrait of Bernadine Broecker Wieder, 2023 Image: Archival, courtesy of Jolly Thompson

Ceramic The sculptor tells STIR, „We’ve seen changes like this before in the art world, starting after 2010 when galleries, first cautiously and now enthusiastically, started using web-based management software and artists started exploring the benefits of NFT technology for digital art sales in 2020. At the end of the day, the benefits outweigh the cost of change. He firmly believes that the art market will increasingly recognize the need for blockchain technology and, if implemented correctly, will protect all participants in the market. The art community for the art community helps protect what we love about participating in this art world.

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