[Interview] Saatchi Art and Samsung The Frame Art Store Take Virtual Art to a Next Level
[Interview] From Streets to Samsung Art Store: Logan Hicks Discusses His Creative Process and Inspiration Behind Urban Stencil ArtBy STF News
Since its launch in 2017, Samsung Art Store has been at the forefront of driving significant changes in the way we experience and appreciate art. With vast collections of artwork, The Frame and the Art Store offer different ways for consumers to enjoy diverse forms of artwork from the comfort of their homes.
Street art — which often incorporates elements of its surroundings and nature — has been finding its place in digital media as display technology and picture quality have rapidly evolved in recent years. Through partnerships with artists like Logan Hicks, Samsung Art Store has been bridging the gap between public art and everyday consumers, bringing intricate details, expressions and impressions closer to users than ever.
Samsung Newsroom had the privilege of connecting with Logan to discuss his creative process and inspiration and how his partnership with Samsung Art Store helped push the boundaries of his craft.
Logan Hicks is a highly acclaimed artist based in New York, renowned for his intricate photorealistic urban landscapes. By using multiple layers of stencils, he seamlessly blends urban aesthetics with extreme precision and detail.
▲ Logan Hicks’ artistic process (video courtesy of Logan Hicks)
Inspiration and Influences: From Baltimore to California and Beyond
Q: Could you tell us a bit about yourself and your career as an artist? How did you come to work with stencils?
After running a successful commercial screen printing business, I decided to focus on my art and moved from Baltimore to California. I tried hand-cut stenciling and fell in love. The process is similar, but stencils are painstaking and not exact. I embraced this challenge and learned to create deep detail with multiple layers.
▲ Logan Hicks
Q: What is your passion that inspires your art?
Travel is both my inspiration and antidepressant. Seeing new countries, people, places and cultures has always helped keep my eyes open to how utterly fantastic the world is. After I travel, I am always excited to get back into the studio.
I also find a lot of inspiration in New York City. The way the city changes throughout the day and year — it has a life of its own. During the pandemic, it was especially interesting to see a vibrant city empty. It was eerily beautiful.
Q: Could you walk us through your artistic process from the photographs you start with to the final product?
I don’t usually go into detail about my process just because it’s easy to confuse the process for the product. About 75% of my time making art is the laborious process of image preparation, stencil cutting, bridging the stencils, etc. To explain briefly, I take photos, break them down into various levels of contrast, cut them out, spray them on top of each other and then carefully paint the lights. My stencils aren’t the kind that you can just roll over a solid coat of paint — I slowly bring out the image with small sprays of paint that I build up.
Q: What is your favorite step in your artistic process?
My favorite step is creating and choosing a mood for my artwork. Will my scene be exacting or painterly? Will it depict the solitude of the evening or the vibrancy of a bright day? One set of stencils can be painted in many ways, and I like figuring out which one is best.
Q: What partnerships have you worked on over the years that stand out to you?
I find that the most successful partnerships are the ones that have the least direction, at least for me. Finding a company that grants freedom to do what I want is paramount for a successful collaboration. A few that come to mind are the Bowery Wall I painted for the Goldman family in New York and a partnership with Porsche for their electric car at Scope Art Fair.
Logan Hicks X Samsung Art Store
Q: Why did you choose to partner with the Art Store?
An artist only has two reasons to continue: to make art and to present the art to an audience. For me, Samsung Art Store was an outlet to showcase my art — it was a new approach to displaying my art, and for that reason, I found it interesting. Living spaces these days continue to get smaller and smaller, so I saw this as a way of sharing multiple artworks instead of hanging them on limited walls.
Q: How does displaying your work on The Frame compare to other media you’ve worked with (e.g., canvas, brick/concrete walls, billboards)?
Good art should be able to translate to various mediums: canvas, walls or digital. The Frame was an interesting platform just because you don’t have control over where it will be hung or what household will download what artwork — it was fun to find out which of my pieces had the most universal appeal. When you make work for a specific location (like with a mural), you have to consider the neighborhood, lighting, surface of the wall, etc. The success of a mural is based on your ability to adapt to the environment. With The Frame, though, it was a case of plucking those works off the wall and putting them into a digital space — the attention was 100% on the artwork that was created instead of the environment that it lives in.
Q: How does your signature technique of blending colors through aerosol contribute to the visual appeal of your work when displayed digitally?
I hope the audience can appreciate my work on multiple levels. For example, you only observe the subject matter at a distance before you start noticing the details as you get closer. Once you’re inches from it, the execution becomes clear — from the way the colors blend to the tiny dots of aerosol paint that make up the surface of the image.
My work has nuances that are difficult to see on traditional digital displays. I’ve been happy with how the matte display of The Frame picks up details of the spray paint and the subtle color changes. The display offers the opportunity to experience the work from various distances as if it exists on a wall or canvas.
Q: You already have experience in creating large-scale murals worldwide in places like Istanbul, Miami, Baltimore, New York, Tunisia, Paris, etc. How does the Art Store partnership expand the global reach and accessibility of your work to audiences beyond that?
I easily forget that 99.9% of the world won’t have the opportunity to see my work in person. When I paint a mural, it’s usually in larger metropolitan areas and in cities where I already have some sort of connection. So, I like to extend my reach to people who may not live in the places I paint. With this approach, someone in the rural outback of Australia has access to my pieces just as someone in the heart of Manhattan does.
Q: What are your top three picks you would recommend to consumers to display on The Frame? Please give us a very brief explanation of each.
▲ The Entrance, 2019
This painting is the front of Monet’s house. I visited Monet’s Garden for the first time and instantly felt like I was in a different land — flowers surrounded me like a green fog, and the smell of flowers filled the air. Standing in front of Monet’s house, I imagined what it would have been like to live there. I think about how this was what Monet saw every morning as he walked the garden and returned to his house.
▲ Giverny, 2019
This piece is also from Monet’s Garden. What I loved the most about the garden is that it’s very rare that you can stand in the same place where a masterpiece was created. I’ve grown up seeing Monet’s paintings in my art history books, on TV and in movies. But when I visited the garden, I realized that I was in the painting. I was standing where Monet once stood as he painted, and suddenly his artwork made more sense to me. Of course, he painted his garden! How can you visit heaven and not memorialize it in a painting?
▲ Axon, 2018
I have a soft spot for Paris: the culture, food, art and architecture. I love it all. This painting is a scene that you see when you walk outside the Gare De Lyon train station. I can remember when I took the photo that I used as inspiration for this piece. My friend asked me, “Why would you take a picture of the street? It’s ugly. It is the train station that is beautiful.” The wonderful thing about being a tourist is that everything is new and fresh. To me, the street was just as beautiful as the train station. That is the power of a good painting — it can enchant the most boring scenes.
The Intersection of Technology and Creativity
Q: As an artist known for your traditional artistic techniques, how do you navigate the intersection between traditional art forms and the digital world?
Art is a language, and learning to speak it in different arenas is critical to the success of an artist. I don’t put too much thought into what is traditional and what isn’t. I just try to consider what the work will look like scaled down to the size of The Frame. I try to think about what pieces have enough complexity to remain on the screen in someone’s space for an extended period.
Q: What unique opportunities does the digital art platform offer for artists like yourself?
The main opportunity I see for the digital space is access to a new audience. Someone may not spend thousands on my painting, but they may download an image of it. I’d like to think that sometimes that may even translate into someone then going out and buying a physical copy of a painting.
It’s also a great way to reach an audience that does not traditionally go to galleries. Art is most successful when people can see a little bit of themselves in it, regardless of whether that is a feeling, experience, thought or mood. That isn’t limited to an art museum attendee. Finding people and connecting with them through art is something that can be done on a much larger scale through a digital platform.
I love the opportunity to reach new audiences who may not have appreciated art before. The art world can sometimes be guarded; The Frame gives new fans an opportunity to consider living with art.
Visit the Samsung Art Store in The Frame to explore more of Logan Hicks’s collection.
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By STF News
Art enthusiasts and everyday consumers alike are constantly searching for new ways to connect with their favorite artist and art collections. The reverse is also true, with art institutions and museums around the world looking for new avenues to engage with art afficionados around the world.
With the rise of digital platforms, the art world has become more accessible than ever before. Samsung Art Store is at the forefront of this revolution, providing a platform for art lovers to enjoy an extensive library of stunning artwork in the comfort of their own homes.
Samsung Newsroom sat down with Cristina Alovisetti, General Manager of Museo Nacional Del Prado Difusion (Museo del Prado’s commercial company), to explore the relationship between in-person art experiences and digital displays. The Prado Museum is one of the most renowned art galleries and the longest standing partners of the Art Store.
In this Q&A, we will dive into how art enthusiasts and institutions can benefit from digital art platforms and ultimately, how a combination of in-person art experiences and new technologies can inspire and offer new avenues of approach for artist and creatives.
▲ Museo Nacional Del Prado
Samsung Art Store X Prado Museum: An Enduring Partnership
Q: For those who are not familiar with the partnership, can you tell us a bit about Museo Nacional Del Prado and your role at the museum?
The Prado Museum is one of the most prestigious art galleries in the world. Its permanent collection is essential in comprehending the evolution of European art and its most notable artists such as Velázquez, Bosch, Rubens and Titian. The museum’s international presence is also evident via its collaborations with other international institutions as well as its global digital footprint — including its website, social media channels and apps.
As the general manager of the museum’s commercial company, I am proud to be a part of this institution since its creation in 2006. Our company’s primary goal is to promote the Museo del Prado brand, its collection and intellectual property rights while also contributing to the museum’s funding. We strive to establish a consistent and robust identity while creating partnerships that help us reach broader audiences.
Q: Can you tell us more about how the partnership with Samsung Art Store came about and what benefits you see in the collaboration?
We began collaborating with Samsung Art Store at the start of our gallery project upon the invitation from the Samsung Electronics Spain team. We were lucky enough to have participated in the 2017 inaugural presentation of the Frame’s partnerships in Berlin. Since then, we have continued to work together, updating and enriching our partnership.
I believe the Art Store is an intelligent and respectful concept that values the artwork and the institution responsible for it. It represents a digital advancement that seamlessly harmonizes with our daily lives and habits. With this platform, I can discover and appreciate art in a convenient and accessible way. I can learn about the artists and their work and share my discoveries with others, which is a great benefit to the end users.
Assessing the Current State of Digital Art Platforms
Q: Digital art platforms have been gaining popularity as they provide accessible and enjoyable ways for users to own and appreciate artwork in their own homes. What direction do you see this trend taking and how do you think it will impact the art industry?
The Samsung Art Store is an innovative platform that offers users a unique way to enjoy and access works of art from the comfort of their own homes. By providing a platform to view images of artwork, paintings, photography and more, the Art Store has made it easier for collectors to own and appreciate art.
This technology could potentially have a significant impact on the art industry by providing new avenues for individuals to access and engage with art. The Art Store has the potential to integrate with personal environments and provide new opportunities for art collectors to showcase their collections.
Overall, the increasing popularity of digital art platforms like the Samsung Art Store is likely to have a positive impact on the art industry by making art more accessible and enjoyable for a wider audience.
Q: What differences do you see between showcasing the artwork in-person vs. digitally on the Frame?
That is a great question. First, I think it’s important to note that we are talking about displaying images of artwork, not the artworks themselves. The way in which the viewer experiences the artwork will depend on whether it can evoke the same emotions as the original piece. While digital displays cannot replace the experience of seeing a Velázquez painting in person, it does offer the convenience of accessing and displaying high-quality images of these artworks in our own homes.
Furthermore, being able to integrate digital artwork into our living spaces, just as we do with furniture or decorative objects, adds a new dimension to the way we experience and appreciate art. It offers new possibilities for enjoying and sharing art in our everyday lives and this is a great thing.
Q: Have you observed any noteworthy trends or patterns in the way people engage with the museum’s online collections?
It is fascinating to see how the public responds to the images displayed in the Art Store. The audience seems to be drawn towards decorative aesthetic and current trends influenced by other media, mirroring the purchasing patterns observed in our museum shops.
Q: Can you share with us some of the most memorable pieces from your collection that are currently featured in the Art Store?
Here are some carefully selected works from a diverse range of works from various painters, styles and themes spanning across different decades. These pieces showcase a range of subjects, from powerful portraits and mythological dances to exquisite details of flower catalogues, offering a glimpse into the beauty and richness of art history.
▲ Las Meninas (1656) by Diego Rodríguez de Silva y Velázquez (cropped for detail)
Las Meninas is undoubtedly the best-known painting in the Museo del Prado and Velázquez’s most famous work. It is also the one which best sums up the characteristics of his art. In a large room of the Alcázar in Madrid, we see the Infanta Margarita, whose detail we can see in this image, flanked by two maids of honor or meninas.
The picture has been interpreted in several ways. The centrality of the infanta Margarita and the reflection of the king and queen in the mirror appear to point to a political and dynastic significance. The presence of Velázquez in the same environment as the king, queen and infanta, and bearing the cross of the Order of Santiago and the chamberlain’s key as attributes of his social status, presumably constitutes a validation of his nobility and that of painting itself.
▲ The Garden of Earthly Delights Triptych (1490-1500) by Hieronymus Bosch
The Central panel, with the four rivers of the world on the horizon, situates the scene on Earth. Carnal desire, represented by beautiful naked women and symbolized by an array of red fruit, becomes mankind’s driving force. The various earthly pleasures to which mankind yields instinctively and unconsciously are illustrated symbolically or specifically. The central panel depicts a Paradise that deceives the senses, a false Paradise given over to the sin of lust.
▲ Dance of Mythological Characters and Villagers (1630-1635) by Pieter Paul Rubens
A group of peasants dance in agitated frenzy, accompanied by a flutist in a tree. The scene takes place in a landscape that recalls Italy, especially the villa in the background, whose shapes resemble those of the architect, Andrea Palladio.
▲ Hollyhocks (1872-1873) by Mariano Fortuny y Marsal (cropped for detail)
Fortuny enjoyed painting flowers in bloom in his scenes. Attracted by their colors, he also made separate studies of them. His favorites were hollyhocks on account of their pleasing hues and the elegant verticality of their stalks, which is accentuated by the format used here. As the background is devoid of references, their corollas appear to float in an indeterminate space, with varying degrees of finish, and the ground layer is visible in some areas of the canvas.
Exploring the Intersection of Art and Technology
Q: What impact do you think recent technological advancements have had on artists, their creative process and the finished artwork?
From my perspective, artists have been introduced to a whole universe of new technological tools, which may influence their creative process to varying degrees, depending on their individual preferences. There are some exceptional artists who have embraced digital tools to create amazing works. In my view, these advancements offer endless opportunities for artists, whether through new artwork or collaborations or both.
Q: How can technology be used to make art more accessible and inclusive to a wider audience?
Undoubtedly, digital technology has the potential to greatly expand the reach of art beyond physical spaces, allowing it to be appreciated in different languages and contexts. For example, many people who are unable to attend exhibitions can still appreciate works of art through digital access. Further, digital art platforms such as Samsung Art Store enable individuals to build their own “collection” at home, making art more accessible and inclusive to a wider audience.
Visit the Samsung Art Store in The Frame to explore more of Prado Museum’s collection.
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By STF News
The natural world has inspired countless songs, photographs, movies and other works of art. Illustrator Natasha Durley also draws inspiration from nature and what started as doodles during her day job turned into so much more. Natasha now works with brands all around the world, having been commissioned for murals, homeware, stationery, apparel, toys and even gaming apps.
Durley’s works especially focus on the diverse textures, shapes and vibrant colors found in nature. From this, she illustrates creative, colorful landscapes that are currently available to viewers not just on puzzles, pillows and books, but now also on The Frame to display in the home.
Natasha Durley is an illustrator based in Bournemouth, U.K. She specializes in creating vibrant and detailed illustrations using a combination of digital and traditional techniques. Natasha’s work is often inspired by her love of the outdoors and her passion for animals and nature.
Samsung Newsroom sat down with Natasha to talk about how she finds inspiration in the natural world and how her work translates to a digital display such as The Frame.
▲ Natasha Durley
From Call Center to Creative
Q: Could you tell us a bit about your career as an artist? What piqued your interest in illustration?
After school, I took a few years to travel and work. I ended up working in a call center but would practice drawing between calls, dreaming of a more creative career. Thankfully, I took the plunge and finally went to Arts University Bournemouth to study illustration. The rest is history!
Q: Your work is filled with vibrant colors, ties in elements of nature and animals and emphasizes textures. Where do you find inspiration to create such unique illustrations?
I’ve always been fascinated by nature, so watching documentaries and reading articles or books about weird creatures and plants is a constant inspiration. I even follow a few biologists on social media.
I collect texture inspiration while on walks — I take photos of bark, rust or any surface that interests me. Working with color is very intuitive. I like gathering reference images just for their color palettes. But in the end, I enjoy the meditative practice of simply playing with color to see what feels right.
Q: Are there any benefits to displaying art digitally on a screen in relation to colors, textures or other factors?
Although I make my textures and paper-cut shapes by hand, my final illustrations are digital. The great thing about presenting in this format is that viewers are seeing all the colors and textures as I made them originally.
▲ As Mad as a March Hare
Partnering With the Art Store to Amplify Illustrations
Q: What drew you to partner with the Art Store?
I instantly knew I wanted to be part of the Art Store. Not only is my work introduced to new audiences, but I love that the artwork can be seen in high definition and at such a large scale on The Frame. My work has lots of detail and texture that can sometimes be lost when viewed on a smaller screen, like a phone.
Q: How has the partnership with Samsung impacted your career?
Working with Samsung has been a dream! I opened my online shop Sunny Beast around the same time I started the partnership with Samsung, and it’s been a big help in introducing me to new customers. It’s one of the reasons I decided to take some time to do more personal work, as connecting with consumers has been so fun. I often get emails and DMs from people who show me my artwork on their Frame TVs!
▲ Easter Stamps
Q: In partnering with the Art Store, you’ve been able to promote biodiversity with SUGi, which is something you’re passionate about. How did this come to fruition?
NAVA Contemporary1 kindly asked if I would like to contribute to an Art Store collection they were curating in partnership with SUGi.2 They were putting together a selection of illustrations focused on biodiversity, and as my work mainly focuses on celebrating the natural world, I couldn’t say no. For me, it’s also essential to give back to the very thing that inspires my work, and I’m always looking for ways to donate to conservation projects. The partnership would enable a portion of the revenue to go directly to regenerating nature in urban areas, so the whole project was a perfect fit!
Q: Are there any works of art that you would you recommend to consumers to display on The Frame? What are your top three pieces? Please give us a very brief explanation of each.
▲ Gobi Desert
Gobi Desert: When we bought our Frame TV and were checking out how my illustrations looked, we were blown away by how nice it made this illustration of mine pop. It’s hard to explain, but it looks alive. You could almost step inside the scene!
Volcanoes: One of my most popular prints and looks excellent on The Frame if you like bold color, texture and form.
For the Love of Plants: For me, it symbolizes the beginning of my whole illustration career as it was my degree showpiece, created over ten years ago! It works well on The Frame because although it looks like a calming pastel landscape at a distance, you’ll see more detailed scenes and stories if you look a little closer.
▲ For the Love of Plants
The Next Wave of Illustrated Art
Q: How have you seen the integration of technology within the art space change the way people consume art? Have there been changes to how your art is consumed?
People were mainly running into my work on the products my illustrations ended up on — children’s books, puzzles, bedding, etc. People increasingly recognize my work from social media and the online space now, so there is a shift.
Q: What will the future of illustrated art look like as technology becomes increasingly integrated in the space?
Traditionally, illustration was all about creating art for a commercial client. However, with the increased reach of technology and new possibilities like the Art Store, I see a lot of new opportunities for illustrators to work both on commercial projects and on projects directly for consumers.
To see more of Natasha Durley’s artwork, head to the Samsung Art Store in The Frame.
1 NAVA Contemporary is an online art gallery featuring a curated selection of artwork by compelling artists and an advisory offering art consultancy services. Established in 2017 by Nicole Archibeque and Valerie Altahawi, two professionals with a combined 30 years of experience in the art world, they were compelled to create an accessible environment that fosters the discovery of and dialogue around contemporary art.
2 SUGi is a global platform fully dedicated to biodiversity building, ecosystem restoration and reconnecting people to Nature through the creation of ultra-dense, biodiverse forests of native species primarily in urban areas.
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By STF News
Technology is no stranger to the art world, and people are still finding new ways to use technology in art every day. Samsung Art Store, for example, works with galleries, museums, independent artists and artist collectives to bring unique digital art experiences to users of The Frame on a brilliant, Matte display. One of these partners, Noah Kalina, is a photographer who finds that technology such as the Art Store can help connect artists to their audiences in new and previously unimaginable ways.
▲ Noah Kalina
Samsung Newsroom sat down with Noah, whose work focuses primarily on the passage of time, to discuss how his work has changed through the years and what the future of display technology might have in store.
The Stories Behind Noah Kalina’s Work
Q: What drew you to a career as an artist, particularly as a photographer?
In high school, I developed a passion for photography and attended the School of Visual Arts in New York City, where I received my BFA in photography. After college, I worked as a freelance editorial and commercial photographer, photographing portraits, landscapes and architectural interiors for various magazines and companies. By being exposed to different people and places, my personal projects were then influenced, and my commercial work allowed me to pursue my own art practice.
Q: Where do you find creative inspiration now?
I still turn to social media platforms to discover new work and find inspiration. I like to see what my friends and fellow artists are working on, so I tend to visit those websites on a daily basis to draw inspiration. Movies are another source for my future projects, and I watch at least four or five movies a week. I take long drives and listen to music because I can think about and conceptualize new ideas there. I also constantly flip through my art book collection to discover more obscure references.
Q: Others have described your work as “capturing the passage of time,” largely due to your well-known Everyday project that documented your face everyday for 20 years. How would you describe your own work?
I have always been interested in the passage of time; over the years, much of my work has been conceptually related to that theme. I love to observe how people and places subtly change over time, which can be seen in a number of my series, from Everyday to Lumberland to The River. I’d describe my work as subtle, quiet, slow and beautiful but with a little bit of humor!
▲ The River / 20220107 (2022)
Noah Kalina X Samsung Art Store
Q: What is the story behind your partnership with the Art Store?
A friend of mine, Cody Cobb, whose work I greatly admire, had pieces in the Art Store. When I first saw his work there, I was enamored with how it looked on The Frame; it’s truly an incredible viewing experience. Shortly thereafter, I was asked to be included and immediately said yes.
Q: How has the Art Store partnership with Samsung impacted your career?
It has enabled my art to be consumed by people across the world. Some who have discovered my art through the Art Store have even inquired about collecting physical prints and some of my books.
Q: How would you compare displaying your art digitally, such as on The Frame, to more traditional mediums like print or an exhibit?
It’s hard to compare because digital displays are obviously very different than traditional prints. In many ways, digital displays like The Frame are better, especially for works native to the digital ecosystem, such as digital art, photography and video. The Matte display on The Frame and the backlighting can render certain artworks in a truly surreal, almost three-dimensional fashion, which is something a traditional print doesn’t do as well. One of the biggest advantages of a digital display is the ability to change the work over time and display different types of mediums. Being able to use the space a television takes up when not in use to showcase art is also a benefit of digital displays.
▲ The Redbud / 20140518 (2014)
Future of Digital Art
Q: Has there been a change in how you create art as technology becomes increasingly integrated into the art world? Have you noticed a change in the way people consume your art?
The changes in technology for monitors and displays have certainly affected how I consider and make my compositions. But in reality, I am a photographic purist and generally do my work with a physical print in mind while understanding that my work may primarily be consumed on screens large and small.
I embraced digital technology fairly early and started posting my work on the internet in 1998. The idea of anyone, anywhere in the world, having access to my art is something I have always loved. People having potentially unlimited exposure to my work has always been important to me.
We’re certainly going to see AI impact commercial photography, and I think a lot of the types of photographs I used to be commissioned for won’t exist anymore. That said, AI tools can be used to enhance photographs and make the editing process easier, and I am interested in how I might apply that technology to my own projects.
▲ Untitled “River” (2013)
Q: Which of your works would you recommend to consumers to display on The Frame?
First, I would recommend the Untitled “Diagonal” (2015), which is a fallen tree captured in foggy woods. I had taken numerous photographs of this scene between 2014 and 2017 until the dead tree fell. There is something about this photograph that works particularly well on The Frame. It appears almost three-dimensional. You can read more about this series here.
▲ Untitled “Diagonal” (2015)
The Lumberland (2015) looks absolutely unbelievable on The Frame and is the first photograph I ever made in my Lumberland series. The series Lumberland is a time-based project documenting a black walnut tree throughout the seasons. I have taken more than 70 photographs of this landscape over the past eight years.
▲ Lumberland / 20150923 (2015)
My Untitled “Path” (2018) also looks fantastic on The Frame because of its mystery. It is a surreal landscape of a branch wrapped in LED lights set next to a seemingly endless stone wall. This is from a series of works where I insert electronic elements into the landscape.
▲ Untitled “Path” (2018)
To discover more of Noah Kalina’s artwork, head to the Samsung Art Store in The Frame.
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[Interview] Artlife Matters X Samsung Art Store Partnership Showcases the Unique Ghanian Perspective Global ViewersBy STF News
Since its introduction in 2017, Samsung Art Store has provided users with remarkable pieces of art in 4K resolution directly to their homes. Users can access these masterpieces via The Frame, Samsung’s lifestyle TV with an enhanced Matte Display that reduces light reflection. With this newest feature, The Frame allows users to view brilliant pieces of art from a catalogue of thousands right on their screen using Art Mode.
To further accessibility to and diversity within art, Samsung has been partnering with numerous museums, galleries and art collectives, with the latest Artlife Matters and Samsung Art Store partnership being one of them. Together, Artlife Matters and Samsung Art Store have been providing consumers with a unique and inspiring selection of artworks by Ghanaian and African artists, giving viewers who may not have been able to view the works in person a chance to experience the art in the comfort of their homes.
Samsung Newsroom sat down with Eric Agyare, the Founder and Project Director at Artlife Matters, to discuss how the organization and its partnership with Samsung Art Store has transformed the perception of art and its role in enhancing diversity and accessibility for artists in Ghana and Africa.
▲ Artists at the Artist Seminar held by Artlife Matters in 2022
Expanding Opportunities for Art
Q: Can you tell us a bit about Artlife Matters and what inspired you to pursue a partnership with Samsung Art Store?
Artlife Matters is an art-influential organization that looks to foster collaboration and partnership opportunities that showcase practicing and upcoming artists within the creative arts space. Due to limited opportunities and resources, at times it can be difficult for artists to reach their full potential. In partnering with the Samsung Art Store, we are able to provide a platform that allows artists the opportunity to experience art from a worldwide lens.
Q: How has the reception of your partnership with Samsung been from members of Artlife Matters and its artists?
The reception from artists has been positive. The exposure and revenue model of the Art Store platform has solved significant career challenges, and our artists now have the peace of mind to keep doing what they love without concerns for livelihood. To date, we currently have artwork submissions from six African countries, allowing consumers to truly enjoy the diverse artwork Artlife Matters provide.
Q: How has your experience working with Samsung affected consumers’ perception of African art?
The partnership has also positively affected consumers’ preferences, exposing them to the unknown aesthetics of our continent. As a result, I believe users of The Frame are more enlightened on the new African narrative than ever before. During our Artist Seminar held in December 2022, Artlife Matters recorded that most of our listed artists on that platform had been contacted by users of The Frame. Some conversations are leading to new projects as well.
Creating Diverse and Accessible Environments in Art
Q: As an art-influential organization that celebrates and promotes art as a form of expression, what are some of the ways the organization helps to address societal issues and inspire a creative and inclusive society?
Artlife Matters has been implementing an art-based capacity building project called “Artitude”, which aims to expand the possibilities of the creative art space. Through workshops, internships and mentorships, we have engaged over 4,395 young creatives in senior high schools across Ghana, showing them the social, cultural and economic possibilities in the creative art space while also promoting the importance of art.
Our goal is to celebrate and highlight art as a social, cultural and economic development tool. The school and community projects we run are created to inspire and shape creatives to reach their vast potential within the art industry. Our goal is to become a pan-African organization with an art ecosystem that allows new and existing creatives to exchange and implement ideas that shape society.
Q: What role do you see technology playing in bridging the accessibility gap for consumers and artists in the coming years?
We believe the effort in democratizing the art industry through technology is increasing the demand for creative goods. Through technology, art can become accessible to the right consumers and offer more exposure to artists’ work. The dream of having a viable career in art can easily be made possible for young adults living in remote areas in Ghana.
Illustrating the Vibrancy and Richness Art
Q: What are some of the unique artistic elements that define Ghanaian art and the newest works in the Art Store?
Ghana is increasingly becoming the hub for contemporary African art. Our vibrant colors, unique way of representing blackness and the authenticity of the Ghanaian narrate now have the world’s attention. We use every opportunity to advocate and demonstrate art’s social, cultural and economic value in Ghana and beyond. Artlife Matters is focused on creating and managing a vibrant art space that influences positive community behaviors, as depicted in the Kolorscape art piece.
Q: Of the newest works in the Art Store, which piece would you recommend for users to display on The Frame?
To showcase the amazing and vibrant works from Artlife Matters and its artists, I’d recommend that consumers display the works of art outlined below on The Frame.
▲ Kolorscapes (2021) by Dela Aemaga(Becké)
Dela Aemaga is a contemporary artist. His works spur dialogue on race, society, culture, religion and politics. Dela firmly believes art validates perception, and this is how he perceives the future of the Accra creative community in this masterpiece.
▲ Melanin Lisa by Elkanah Kwadwo Mpesum (el Carna)
Elkanah Kwadwo Mpesum is a professional illustrator with an edge to narrate authentic African stories. His version of the “Mona Lisa” is a tribute to the beauty and majesty of black womanhood.
▲ She Snap by Manzi Leon
Manzi Leon is a self-taught surreal visual and digital artist who loves the impasto painting style because it gives him exciting energy to see visible brush strokes converging on a canvas to form a masterpiece that expresses the thoughts and feelings of women in his community. This painting depicts how we get happiness and the power to stick to what motivates us.
To see more of Artlife Matters’ artwork, head to the Samsung Art Store in The Frame.
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