For the past seven years, I have wanted to find the answer to a particular question: How can I make art more accessible?
But I realized along the way that I was actually asking a deeper question: Why did I want to make art more accessible?
It all started with a profound personal experience. When I was 18 years old, I was diagnosed with depression.
I found myself in a state of disillusion with the world. I didn’t believe in anything—whether that was love, friendship, or family—and I had lost all the meaning that made life worth living.
It was the beauty of art that revived me from this depression.
I decided to take a gap year to live in Paris.
There, my access to incredible art and beauty helped me to move through my sadness and anxieties, and to look past the dark side of human nature.
It made me see the good. It made me believe in the good. It made me feel alive again.
Art didn’t just save me from depression. Instead of feeling disillusioned with the world around me, I became curious about it.
Art made me want to explore and discover.
I wanted to share this beauty with others, so I volunteered at the Louvre Museum, which truly cemented my passion for art education.
I relished the experience of helping museum visitors discover the stories behind the artworks they saw, and sparking joy in their everyday lives.
But I realized that my transformative experience with the beauty of art was still inaccessible to so many people.
So, I asked myself: How could I help someone experience the beauty of art like I did—especially when they don’t have the time or the means to do so?
How could I harness the healing power of art to help inspire someone who, like me, was searching for the meaning of life?
For the past seven years, I have made several different attempts at making art more accessible.
First, as a university student, I interned at Christie’s and Chiswick Auctions in London, as well as a few art galleries. I gained important insights into the ecosystem of art business through these internships. It was exciting to constantly discover artworks worth millions, and to interact with top collectors and dealers.
But the more involved I became in this world, the more I found myself feeling alienated from it.
I witnessed firsthand the elitism of the art world, and I learned that being in an environment that excludes and discriminates people based on their net worth did not align with my goal to democratise art. So, I decided to shift gears.
My next attempt was to use technology to facilitate art accessibility.
I completed a coding bootcamp and, in collaboration with some classmates, built a website called Artroom.
We designed this platform to help users find and learn about contemporary artworks based on their mood and interests. At the time, I didn’t know anything about growth marketing or product market fit yet, and neither did my collaborators, so we left the idea behind after we finished our coursework.
I then began working on Artify, an educational app designed to make art education fun and accessible by crowdsourcing art knowledge. This prototype was never completed due to a lack of time and funding. I observed that the market growth of the art world at the time was dismal, and that hardly any VC funding was going into it. I ultimately left this idea behind, too.
Although I remained passionate about democratising art, I temporarily left the art world in order to discover how I could introduce innovation into it upon my return.
I completed a Master of Business Management degree at London Business School, and have since founded my own digital marketing agency and scaled a few businesses to six and seven figures per year.
These experiences outside the art world gave me a holistic view of how businesses and products work, how to build teams, and how to successfully launch new commercial projects.
When I witnessed the explosion of digital art and NFTs in 2022, as well as the gradual maturity of the metaverse, I reentered the art world with a renewed passion for making the beauty of art accessible.
What we are witnessing right now in web3 is a creative Renaissance.
There’s no longer constraints of time and space for creators in metaverse.
Blockchain technology can unlock new artistic expressions - introducing the concept of time into art & make artworks into interactive and ever-changing experiences.
Digital storytelling, gamification, and immersive, phygical experiences have the power to tell the stories behind art in new innovative ways.
This is why I founded MetaSurreal. We aim to help artists turn their physical artworks into digital NFTs so that they, and their fans, can have access to this creative Renaissance.
Our ultimate goal is to use the power of Web3 technology to democratise access to art through innovative digital artwork, dynamic animations, and art NFTs.
Digital technology can empower all kinds of artists to explore new frontiers in their creative work.
It can also empower their audiences to more fully experience the unique process of creation, and to notice the tiny details that make an artwork great—all without them having to visit an exclusive auction house or spend a fortune on traditional art history courses.
We want to bring physical artworks to life in the digital world and captivate audiences on a whole new level.
At MetaSurreal, we want to make art accessible to all.
And, as an intrepid team of forward-thinking digital artists and art experts, we have the tools to do it by transforming physical masterpieces into dynamic digital experiences that can reach anyone.