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Loupe Art's Dot Bustelo Talks Disrupting Art Distribution

Loupe Art is a unique platform for artists to be found by global audiences via an immersive and uninterrupted display of artwork on TV and other connected screens. Tim Siglin, Founding Executive Director, Help Me Stream Research Foundation and Contributor Editor, Streaming Media, talks with the Founder & CEO of Loupe Art, Dot Bustelo, about the ways that the platform works for both artists and art lovers.

“We are disrupting the distribution of art, utilizing the same technology of streaming that has disrupted music, film, TV, with art,” Bustelo says.

“And so the idea here is someone wouldn't need to go to the art gallery to see it,” Siglin says. “They could actually watch [it].”

“Well, I don't know if I would say that…just because you stream music at home doesn't mean that you wouldn't go to your favorite band's concert,” Bustelo says. Regarding the particular advantages of Loupe Art, she elaborates: “This complements. This is for music lovers, for art lovers, for people that care about lifestyle, for atmosphere in their home, out of home, that want to do something with their television that's culturally inspired, elevated. And of course, we're giving artists all over the world a new opportunity for discovery and to sell their art to new potential collectors.”

“And would these be established artists, or emerging artists, or both?” Siglin asks.

“It's a curated platform,” Bustelo says. “So artists are invited to submit their work for consideration to our curation and programming team. We have artists that are reaching out to us from all over the world.”

“Traditionally, people used to go on art buying tours in different parts of the world to bring art back to a gallery so that people from that local area could come and see art from all over,” Siglin says. “You're doing this model where you're curating it. But you mentioned that it's also for sale. So how do you deal with the distribution model of showing it to people in a particular market if the art itself may be somewhere else in the world? Or do you bring the art together into a single location and then ship it out from there?”

“So, artists submit digital images for consideration to be streamed in these curated streams,” Bustelo says. “We have art for happy hour, we have tranquil art. We have some traditional categories of art like abstracts, or ‘traditional’ in a contemporary sense of the word. Seasonal collections, cultural collections. And when we sell the art, we print on demand. So we print fine art prints, and then we do sell select originals and we handle the fulfillment. Now we are expanding that connected marketplace to NFTs.”

“Oh, very interesting,” Siglin says. “And how recent has that expansion to NFTs been?”

“We started inviting Loupe artists to submit works for consideration to stream our platform that they've minted elsewhere,” Bustelo says. “And with the QR code, it points to wherever they are selling those NFTs. We've started streaming select collections from other NFT marketplaces that want to reach a broader TV audience. A lot of the NFT marketplaces today are reaching their small communities of collectors that know about that particular website. And we're bringing the opportunity of buying and discovering NFTs to a broad TV audience. We're streaming on 14 TV platforms right now. All of the major platforms, you name it, we are on it.”

“I would assume you also have a fairly discerning audience as well,” Siglin says. “So if those smaller NFT organizations want to get to somebody who appreciates art, as opposed to just the general populace…?”

“Our audience are both people that appreciate art and people that appreciate atmosphere,” Bustelo says. “We're a patented platform. We do fun things like shuffle all the art to stream by the dominant color. So you can be looking at art that's predominantly red, predominantly blue. So imagine the mood that creates when you're listening to a particular genre of music. So we're really adding to the atmosphere and creating an experience, a cultural life, a new cultural lifestyle experience in a home and out of home. We're streaming in condo lobbies; we're streaming in Las Vegas. Caesar's Entertainment is one of our partners. So this is certainly for people that directly appreciate art, and I like to say for people that appreciate visual stimulation. Things that they like to look at that will add to the atmosphere of their space in and out of home.”

“So if you had to pick three pieces that you've streamed that you would want in your own atmosphere, what kind of pieces would those be?” Siglin asks.

“It's really a variety from photography to digitized images of fine art paintings,” Bustelo says. “It’s every form of contemporary art that we're streaming. What I really like is the complimentary experience of having Loupe streaming on many TVs in my home, as well as the art that really resonated with me to select, to hang and frame on the wall. And the juxtaposition creates a really nice atmosphere.”

“That’s a really nice way to put it,” Siglin says. “Because essentially you can have your stream of art that would fit to an atmosphere or mood at a particular time…”

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