The Art & Finance market has made unprecedented development over the past few years, which has resulted in the financialisation of the art market.
As financial-technology (or fintech) start-ups have been mushrooming, Thomas Gilbert, a British-born young entrepreneur has joined the force by introducing blockchain technology and distributing cryptocurrency to the vibrant but opaque art market. ArtBankChain (hereinafter abbreviated as ABC), his company, is planning to launch the initial coin offering this January.
Fascinated by art world, Thomas came to Asia to pursue his passion despite graduating from a biological sciences degree in the UK.
Alongside his international team– including previous employees from the Internet behemoths like Baidu and Ctrip, Thomas has ventured into art finance by founding ArtBankChain, a system in which art can be securely catalogued, digitized, bought and sold by both enthusiasts and industry professionals.
According to the company, “ABC is an intelligent, open and public ecological chain of information, linked across the global art industry. ABC is designed to provide open and secure data storage using blockchain technology, as well as digitalizing crucial elements of the art world, including works of art, collectors, dealers, auction houses and art institutions. After digitalization, properties, such as artworks, can be put up sale via digital transactions. The intent of this is to accelerate the rate of art liquidation, while at the same time forever changing the way traditional art transactions have been made.”
There have always been three constant problems in the art market: (1) liquidation is limited: (2) authenticity is difficult to prove plus (3) inheritance is hard to determine. Despite the rapid growth of the art market, these problems have gradually worsened.
But Thomas believes, “The Art market has grown so much in recent years that blockchain technology will soon be necessary at this rate.” In partnership with more than 10 auction houses, 4 insurance companies and several galleries, ABC is expected to have the potential to change the dynamics of art market in the coming years.
About Thomas James Gilbert
Thomas was born and raised in Plymouth, England. From an early age Thomas was always drawn to art, and therein the ability to express himself through creativity. Shortly after graduating from University of Lincoln with a bachelor’s degree in biological sciences, he decided to follow a different career path – to learn more about the world of art and ultimately, the art of the world. His path eventually led him to Asia, where he discovered cultures vastly different from his own, and he got the chance to learn more about the history of art, as well as understand more about art industry. Fascinated by galleries, exhibition curating and the art finance market, Thomas sought to create a new but safe way to promote art across the world. With his passion for art and the collaborative work of his international team, Thomas has ventured into art finance by founding ArtBankChain, a system in which art can be securely catalogued, digitised, bought and sold by both enthusiasts and industry professionals