Art entrepreneur Stephanie Crosland-Goss is proving it can with her new art membership, Interrupted Art. Having headed-up collection consultancy at the British Museum, she moved to Tate where she was responsible for art acquisitions across the entire collection. Stephanie now focuses on building Interrupted Art, a new way to experience and discover great art at home. She tells Frank about her passion for democratising art.
Stephanie, what is Interrupted Art and how does it work?
Interrupted Art is London’s newest art membership. Our curators select an artwork by one of our emerging artists and hang it in your home to enjoy for 10 weeks.
During this time our members have the option to buy it, but there’s no pressure to buy. We keep swapping the work every 10 weeks as a changing art display in your home – all for £66 per month.
Does a member choose the art that will be on their wall or do your curators do that?
We have a consultation with our members when they first join by email or phone to understand what their preferences are and if there are any of our artists that they absolutely love.
All our members need is a space that is 100cm by 100cm and a single nail or hook. We’ll then tailor each delivery to that member, where the art is hung in their home and what they like. We are their personal curator.
How did you get into the art world?
I’ve always been interested in art, catching the train from Hertfordshire with my school friends to visit museums and galleries on the weekends.
Tate Modern was my favourite even though I just didn’t get modern art at the time at all. I then went on to study Classics in London where my love for art really grew with access to galleries on my doorstep. Being around all these amazing artworks, I knew I wanted to work in the art world.
After several years working in tech companies, I joined the British Museum and then was offered a position buying art at Tate. My role at Tate was to buy art for the collection across its whole scope – historic British art from 1500 to contemporary international works.
It was a fantastic role and so satisfying seeing the pieces I’d brought into the collection displayed across all four of the Tate galleries.
What fuels your passion for supporting and promoting emerging artists?
The art world is a difficult and unfair place for artists. It costs huge amounts of money to show at art fairs, and galleries can take 50% from artists for any sale. This means many incredibly talented artists can’t get in front of an art-loving audience and make a living.
Interrupted Art is set up to change this. We help our artists find their audience, work with them on how to market themselves and their work as well as mentor their careers.
The way Interrupted Art works also means that we support our members who are curious about what’s fresh in the art world right now but are not sure how to start collecting or where to go to learn more about it.
At art fairs there can be huge pressure to buy in a small window of time leaving us thinking ‘did I make the right decision’?
It can be a lot of money to spend so spontaneously. Equally private galleries can be intimidating and too exclusive. With our model, our members have 10 weeks to enjoy the art with no pressure at all to buy. Just enjoy!
How do you find and choose emerging artists to work with?
We discover them in many ways. Having worked at Tate in art acquisitions, I was able to meet some fantastic early-career artists recommended by world-renowned curators.
Researching new trends and innovations in the art world, we then reach out to artists via their social media and visit their studios to see their fantastic works in real life.
We work directly with our artists to choose the works that will come into the Interrupted Art collection to best showcase how skilled they are.
To be an Interrupted Artist, talent is important. But sharing the same values and working together as partners is just as important so we’re very selective about who we represent.
Can you tell us about some of the amazing artists you are working with?
We currently represent 15 artists, who all bring something different to Interrupted Art. From Steve Gallagher’s hyper-detailed photography and Amy Devlin’s amazing underwater perspectives to abstract canvases from Shumaiya Khan and Phil Carter.
We also represent international artists with Marit Geraldine Bostad, who has a huge studio in an old naval base just outside of Oslo, Norway.
What impact does Interrupted Art have on the careers of the artists you work with?
At Interrupted Art we bring the art directly to the collectors, sharing information about the artist and the artwork so there can be a deep appreciation and enjoyment from the experience of having this artwork in their home.
We advise and mentor all of our artists to make sure they’re getting the best opportunities to showcase their works and through these channels their careers go from strength to strength.
I’m incredibly passionate about supporting our artists to be able to build their careers as working artists and to share their talent with our members.
What’s the feedback you’re getting from members?
It’s being so well received and our membership is growing. People love the idea of changing artwork in their homes and our belief that great art makes great homes has really struck a chord with people considering a home makeover.
Our members have access to all of our artists and have the opportunity to learn more about the art-making process. We also host several events over the year to showcase our artists’ work and so by getting everyone together, we’ve created a fantastic art community.
Our members love our concept and we’ve had such great feedback about how our works of art can change the entire feel of a room from one 10-week period to the next.
It’s so gratifying to hear that our members enjoy getting under the skin of the artwork, appreciating it for its beauty and also having the opportunity to understand how it’s created and why.
You can find out more about Interrupted Art HERE