Invisible Artists are any artists who have achieved recognition and respect among their peers and the creative community but aren’t recognized or appreciated by the general public or outside of the art world.
In Time Magazine’s 2010 Edition of the “100 Most Influential People” in the world, 25 were ‘artists.’ Out of the 25, 2 were visual artists. The duo behind “Penny Arcade” (an online cartoon) and Banksy. I’m not at all implying that graffiti artists and cartoonists don’t deserve this honor, but isn’t it a little sad that those were the only 2 types of fine art represented? The truth is no painters, photographers, graphic designers or artists of less-popular-appeal art forms were on this list because none were truly influential in the year 2010. It certainly wasn’t for lack of talent. In fact, it may even be because there is too much talent in these fields, and there wasn’t one artist in particular who stood out in the crowd, with the exception of Banksy.
The goal of Invisible Artists is to bring the world’s best visual/fine artists the same success and recognition as the best musicians, athletes and political figures, etc… by utilizing the full potential of new technology platforms and the internet, and to essentially make visible the artists that have so long been invisible; masked behind the camera, the computer, or the more popular faces that accept awards for the work that they barely had anything to do with.
How do we plan on achieving that? Firstly, we are filming a documentary set to release by 2015. Until then we will be developing and growing this website as a resource to help artists maximize their reach and potential.
Actors, musicians, athletes – all the work they do is credited directly to them. They are all uniquely branded products, being sold by their managers and agents based on their experience and skill level. They have a skill to market that is no more unique or special than the skill it takes to be a master painter, a visionary director or a innovative graphic designer… yet actors and musicians at the top make about 100x more than visual artists at the top. One. Hundred. Times. More. Let that sink in.
It’s easy to see why… just look at the few visual artists (who are still alive) that have broken through the barrier. Annie Lebovitz. Shepard Fairy. Banksy… there aren’t many visual artists who are household names in America or throughout the world who haven’t been dead for more than a century. What did these artists do that was different than other visual arts that made them so successful in the mainstream, and not just in the art community? They branded themselves. They made their name, and their unique product, a commodity that was in demand. Almost every great thing they did had their signature style, and they made sure people knew who created it.
Twenty years ago if you saw a painting hanging up in a building somewhere and you fell in love with it and wanted to buy a piece from the same artist, even if you could read the signature on the piece the chances of you being able to find the artists work anywhere, or buy it, were very slim. The same was similar for music – if you heard a song in a restaurant it would be difficult to figure out who it was. Thanks to technology, now we can find out who the artist is by letting an app tell us on our phone. The same is not true for visual art – nothing has changed.
Some forms of art are simply not as easy to market and sell as others… until now. The internet is a total game changer. It simply hasn’t been utilized to it’s full potential by the art community. Many websites have tried on a smaller scale, and have succeeded in their niche markets. Threadless.com for t-shirts, deviantart.com for art prints, Etsy.com for homemade goods and crafts. They all still appeal almost exclusively to the art community. What if we launched a movement that brought visual artists more mass appeal and recognition? That is our goal. We are Invisible Artists.