In this section of the World, the Longlist for the DIIA presents two more resourceful platforms. For this special recognition, we are presenting the company that’s dubbed the “Tinder of the Art World” and the art pedagogical giant that’s helping so many of us learn about art! 

Both of these companies have a mission to make their users fall in love with art as well as learn about art through tech! So – Let’s start the intros and let’s begin with the former! 

Fair Art Fair

Fair Art Fair’s Website Screenshot

Fair Art Fair is a new art-based app that’s focused on making viewers fall in love with art all over again. How long has it been since you’ve been moved, stirred, changed, confused, or even repulsed by an artwork? Has an artwork made you feel like a sentient being with actual emotions recently? Well, at Fair Art Fair, you have to brace yourself to feel embraced by art again. 

Fair Art Fair is an adopter of a .ART domain that is used as a dynamic destination for artists, art lovers, and people looking for beautiful things. The founder is someone who wishes to extend their love for art on a platform that’s focused on access and accessibility. Because, well, since forever, artists have been almost invisible except for the select few that reach our attention by virtue of the art world’s exposure selection. This is by design. The art world has gatekeepers, elite gallery hierarchies, and business people curating and selecting who we get to see and who we don’t, who we get to connect with and who we don’t. Thanks to Fair Art Fair, this is all about to change. 

Dubbed as “The Tinder of the Art World” by NYT, Fair Art Fair is known for facilitating connections between artists and art lovers in a new and innovative way. Their platform is a transparent and fair community destination for art discovery, artist support, art benefits, connections and inter-communications. The platform essentially matches users and art lovers with art through expertise. 

The Fair Art Fair app has had over 40 thousand impressions on the app store, near 5k downloads and is averaging over 20% conversion rate, with a subscription revenue of nearly 40k since October – organically. They have been featured in the New York Times, Financial Times, Hong Kong Business News, and Nigerian Business News. Founder Stacie McCormick has been a speaker at the Art Business Conference, Fuel Arts, and Art Talks. This progress is making the founder, who had run a gallery for over 11 years, and sponsored over 300 artists in her career, feel like their dream, and many art lovers’ dreams are finally coming true. She says:

“It is thrilling to see new artists joining the Fair Art Fair App community – daily and discovering them, supporting them and providing this destination for art – a dream of many years coming to life and now working!” Founder Stacie McCormick

It -is- working. This innovative platform is seeing more than 55k registered visual artists from the UK alone on their app, and over 1600 galleries! (Imagine the real-life space those infrastructures would have to take and among other hassles if it weren’t for tech). Fair Art Fair has also commissioned both UK government and US government research surveys to better understand what art lovers are seeking exactly, in order to deliver the best results. The surveys showed that 24% of the survey takers said they would subscribe to the platform – representing 4.7 million people in the UK alone.

Art has always been about innovation and creativity and Fair Art Fair is making a pretty (fair) representation of this ethic. 

Don’t go anywhere just yet because – Our second nominee in this list is ArtCentrica! Who are they? What’s their mission? Read on!


ArtCentrica’s Website Screenshot

ArtCentrica has made it to the Longlist and concludes the conversations we had with many of the great minds behind the amazing roster of projects that form this year’s Longlist. 

“Art will be more and more important: from education to edutainment I see huge possibilities for art to be really democritised by digital technologies and create a positive impact on billion of people globally” Marco Cappellini – CEO and co-founder ArtCentrica

ArtCentrica is well known for the innovative art based as well pedagogical services they provide – and their services are changing the way art is taught! Their pedagogical approach is based on an active learning approach, which consists of creating an environment that stimulates students to actively get involved in the learning process. How? 

The cloud server they provide gives professors a chance to improve lessons in a simple and engaging way, and supports teachers with active learning tech. They do so by giving the necessary technology that allows students to visualize art in intimate detail, compare, virtually measure, and correlate artworks, and create lessons that can be used inside and outside the classroom. A few words on ArtCentrica’s motivation from their Senior Marketing and Sales Senior, Michele Ancillotti:

“The education technology sector is growing rapidly and has shown us innovative teaching solutions that were unthinkable a few years ago. If on the one hand this was a natural response to the need for digitization, on the other hand the need for teaching through new technologies has become increasingly clear both to update the educational system and to intercept the interest of new generations (digital natives ). For art, unfortunately, the present proposal worldwide is still weak but I see strong attention and interest from companies, institutions and associations for this matter and I am strongly convinced that a proposal like ArtCentrica can be an adequate response to these needs.”

The cloud application contains a great part of the artistic heritage of the Uffizi Galleries in very high resolution, up to 10 GigaPixel, a selection of artworks from the Brera Museum, the MET, Rijkmuseum, Central Graphic Institute in Rome, Cleveland Museum of Art, Finnish National Museum, Museo Egizio, Reims Musée des Beaux-Arts, SMK, Staedel Museum.

They have many users all over the world ! ArtCentrica is used by global educational institutions, with 14 schools in Italy actively using their services (In Paleromo, Lucca, , Domodossola, Torino, Brescia, Brindisi, Bologna, Savona, Milano, Messina, Pelago, Bari, Modena, and  Grosseto), a school in Mexico City, one in Paraguay and even National Geographic uses their services! see “The Greatest Wildlife Photographs. (Yes, even awarded for their innovation – not just by National Geographic but by many others as well).

“There is no humanity without art and creativity, and there is no future without innovation and technology. The union of the two will be the true frontier of the next generation, giving rise to new forms of expression.” Jonela Llaci – Art Director and UX/UI designer

To be used by so many institutions means many rely on their security infrastructure as well. Their images are protected through many layers including an integration of an AWS cloud server, a document oriented database server, an integrated API service, an image server for the import of HR images, protection of image assets, and the use of HTML5 language. The image server they use is responsible for the delivery of very high resolution digital images with Gigapixel images being accessible instantly on any device be it a browser, touch screen, pc, smartphone / tablet, electronic whiteboard, or even Apple TV.

Congratulations to Fair Art Fair and ArtCentrica on making it to the Longlist of the Digital Innovation in Art Award – their projects are spectacular and we can’t wait to see how things unfold this coming Fall. Jury announcements are to follow!