FOTAM 2020 / Expanded Formats: Reimagining Art Economies Online

20 Oct 2020

Regular hours

Tue, 20 Oct
13:00 – 14:30

Timezone: Europe/London

Free admission


Hosted by: Creative United

Book your free ticket on Eventbrite to receive the zoom link before the event.

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First in the FOTAM 2020 series, we explore the potential of technologies and technopolitics for alternative future art market economies.


FOTAM 2020: Redefining Value in the Art Market

Event 1: Expanded Formats | Reimagining art economies online

Co-conveners: Lucy Rose Sollitt and Jo Townshend


The Covid-19 crisis has caused the art market to move online and accelerated the use of emerging technologies such as AR and VR. Yet dominant approaches to selling art using such technologies - whether by galleries, art/tech startups or online marketplaces - often replicate the logic of today’s corporatised technologies and transpose sales models from an already polarised art market.

Use of AI is narrowly focused on achieving sales “efficiencies”, proprietary AR apps are used as visualisation tools for wealthy collectors, virtual 3D simulations are limited to unsatisfactory recreations of fair booths complete with static artworks and VIP areas. While using technologies as sales tools can be positive and needed, the vision seems constricted as the market strives for scarcity. This bears little resemblance to the rich expressions artists are creating using networked technologies, or artists’ responses to wider technopolitics.

In the short term, the likely result is to maintain the status quo and consolidate power-bases. Meanwhile, increasing dissatisfaction at the centralising dynamics of platform capitalism is prompting the creation of alternatives where more people benefit from the value they create. Is the market vulnerable to disruption by the next generation of tech users and innovators?


During this interactive event, Lucy Rose Sollitt and Jo Townshend convene a panel of experts working in the field of art and technology to consider:

What if approaches to selling and experiencing art online were based on a deeper understanding of the artistic possibilities and politics of technologies? Might alternatives to dominant economies be revealed?

Together we will consider a range of models and ideas imagined by artists, thinkers, critical technologists working with and reflecting on networked technologies. From blockchain enabling alternative models for selling and supporting creation of born digital artworks, to curated content and art based on Web 1.0 principles. It will explore whether such approaches offer viable alternatives for generating sales while freeing art from dominant market dynamics. And reflect on which perspectives could anticipate future artistic economies.


This event will take place via Zoom. A link to join the event will be sent to you beforehand. 

Full panel lineup to be announced shortly.



About Lucy Rose Sollitt

Lucy Rose Sollitt is a curator, writer and strategic advisor. Recent curatorial projects include AI Institute at Goethe Institut, Psychomancy Syndicate with OMSK Social Club and Zien, Roleplay Reality at FACT, and Life...Is Grand by Brandon Covington Sam-Sumana at York Mediale

About Jo Townsend

Jo Townshend is the Principal Partnerships Manager (Creative Industries), UCL Innovation and Enterprise. Recent projects include the UCL AI and Art Futures programme (curated by the Slade School of Fine Art, Laws, Engineering and Innovation & Enterprise) in partnership with Arts Council England.


About FOTAM 2020

FOTAM 2020: Redefining Value In The Art Market is a series of events and interactive discussions taking place online from 19 - 30 October 2020

FOTAM 2020 is produced by Creative United and curated by Lucy Rose Sollitt, with support from Arts Council England, Creative Scotland and UCL Innovation & Enterprise.



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