Cohart Is Making Art Accessible to Everyone
Renowned ’80s artist Keith Haring said, “Art is for everybody.” Cohart, the new app for showcasing, selling and discovering art, is putting an emphasis on everybody. “The art world has been built for the .01 percent today,” says Cohart co-founder and CEO Kendall Warson, noting the difficulty in making the traditional world of art available to the other 99.99 percent. Warson and her co-founder, Shyevin S’ng, are both tenured members of the art industry, having worked as an immersive art curator (the former) and gallerist (the latter). After meeting while working on a blockchain/NFT gallery in Hong Kong, Warson and S’ng decided it was time for the elitist culture of art to change — on a global scale.
Cohart functions as a digital art gallery that’s accessible to anyone. Verified artists of any background or medium can share and sell their art, build a community of other artists and followers, and post livestreams while they create. Members can follow artists to learn more about their style and story, share their own art collection, and buy art backed by the Cohart team, ensuring each piece is authenticated and shipped safely.
By removing the barriers of gallery walls and the distance between artists and collectors (both physically and socially), Cohart aims to make everyone a curator — much like Instagram made everyone a photographer.
“Everyone owns art but no one really calls themself an art collector today,” Warson says. “The idea is that the more you use Cohart, the more you can confidently step into those shoes and find your voice in the art world.”
Buying a piece on Cohart is not like ordering a poster off Amazon. Cohart verifies each artist — not by the number of galleries they’ve displayed in, but by passion, craftsmanship and ability to fulfill an order. Cohart clients can rest assured that the piece you select is unique.
For the artists, Cohart is designed to be all one needs in a platform to build a community and sell art efficiently. Typically, art galleries take 50 percent of the sale from an artist. Cohart is currently at half that, asking for 25 percent of the sale by artists who sell through the platform, and hoping to lower that percentage as the platform grows. To amplify the experience for artists, Cohart has plans to roll out services for them to manage their business all in one place, such as CRM tracking, price advising and data analytics for insights on who is viewing their art and for how long.
Having just launched in January 2022, Cohart had over a million dollars in art sales in that year. Priorities for the future are focused on growing the community by implementing features like live art studio visits and hosting in-person events where Cohart artists showcase work for members in different cities all over the world.
“That’s what we want to empower — a bottoms-up approach from people and all their unique perspectives,” says Warson, enthusiastic about the art world of tomorrow. “Niche passions in the art market that find each other, build confidence together, share insights and build community.”