For the past few years, platforms such as tumblr.com, Instagram and pages on Facebook may have been used as the dominant podiums upon which artists may be able gain exposure and display portfolios of previous works. Now, there may also be a new and innovative way through which they may create professional and dynamic hubs for their creations online. Through the new initiative, called ‘.art’, artists may be encouraged to create a domain of websites dedicated solely to artists online, grouping them in an accessible and specialised manner.
The concept was placed together by the United Kingdom Creative Ideas Ltd. (UKCI) in the spring of 2016, when they signed an agreement with the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) to hold exclusive rights over the .art domain. According to the team, the vision of this contract is to ‘advance the art world through technology and creativity’ in the long term, first establishing a new dedicated territory for artists and art foundations to share their own work and ambitions.
By aiming to work with many different artistic platforms such as galleries, media organisations and individuals, the .art initiative aims to encompass more than the traditional forms too, spanning from some of the conventional performance, literary and film genres to new frontiers such as cooking and sport. In creating a refreshing and innovative project such as this, .art and UKCI may provide coverage for new communities and forms, which cross into various other fields, suggesting how the idea may be founded in forward-thinking initiative.
Already, many international institutions and independents may have adopted and committed the .art domain, such as the Van Abbemuseum in the Netherlands and Chinese artist Shen Wei, who specialises in performance art and painting. Already, some participants have fully shifted to the domain in the hopes of substantiating the platform for future cooperation’s with the art forms, each aiming to create unique and stimulating pages to diversify and individualise this creative campaign. One example may be artist Steve Miller, who now displays much of his portfolio and future events upon the domain.
Whilst the domain may be presently home predominantly to established artists and organisations, the company aims to continue its growth by expanding in batches starting in 2017, opening applications for ICANN registered entities initially. Once this batch is completed, arts-related non-profits and established members of the art world may register from February, and those with any interest in the arts may join from May onwards.
In addition to its practically for art followers, .art may also provide companies practical benefits: UKCI comments upon how the project is a form of ‘identity’, cementing those who participate as a member of the arts world and following and thus creating a community for discussion and innovation. Further to this practicality, those desiring a new way of refining their digital branding may find using the domain attracts more attention and enhances their ability to communicate with each other and the outside world, potentially creating a network of close-knit users which span from the professional to amateur and admiring.
With technology, media and art becoming increasingly intertwined, it may be seen how initiatives such as this become the norm in years to come. By enabling and encouraging the active engagements of artists on platforms other than the social, UKCI and .art may provide a professional platform which is both stimulating and engaging, allowing admirers from across the world to participate in and experience different kinds of art forms.
How may society combine future opportunities with contemporary media in order to create artistic diversity?