A 300-year-old Thangkha painting is currently on display at Rossi & Rossi in Hong Kong. While antique collectors may be disappointed to learn it has already been sold — for nearly a half-million USD — this painting has the potential to be printed again by whoever wants it. With the ‘We Curate. You Create’ platform, Red T Multiples has launched the world’s first service offering bespoke, original artwork, all to the design specifications of whoever wants it… even you.
With Red T Multiples, users essentially have the opportunity to physically edit an artist’s finished work to their own needs. Whether the size of the original is too big, too small or the wrong dimensions entirely, the platform is tailored for users to find the perfect piece to match their lives.
“With 60 pieces of licensed originals that we truly believe in, the artwork is only available on our digital platform, enabling users to make them bespoke or customised, printed to their design specifications,” says Tamsin Nugent, founder and creator of the Red T Multiples Platform. “The artists featured on the platform are based on people I would meet, whether it be art villages, an introduction or an art fair.”
The type of artwork featured is more abstract because it is easier to curate unique forms and backgrounds into multiples — duplicate identical artworks — rather than modern or impressionist artwork.
“The initial questions that came to mind were, how do we innovate access to art and stop artists being taken advantage of?” says Nugent. “The platform focuses more on the practical considerations of art, it doesn’t take away or disrupt the individual’s ability or taste in art.”
The platform takes the expense and difficulty out of obtaining art by finding a balance between the artists’ passion and the buyers’ wants. Upon choosing their piece of art from a virtual gallery, buyers can choose to purchase the piece at either a pre-set size, designed to IKEA’s portrait frames, or use the customisation feature to ‘create’ their piece. Using tools such as cropping and resizing, users create their own limited edition and the original will be inaccessible to anyone other than the buyer, thereby maintaining the traditional notion of rarity often associated with high-end artwork.
As a child, Nugent often visited museums and galleries with her family. Applying for her undergraduate degree to Oxford University, she opted to do an essay on the evolution of art.
“The first time I knew I was interested in art was visiting the Sensation exhibition owned by Charles Saatchi,” said Nugent. “To me, Saatchi demolished the entire traditional convention of art. I thought that I could promote this style of convention and essentially bring cool stuff to cool people,” she added.
Working as an art consultant at the time, the artist Tamsin had worked with was unable to visualise the client’s needs as stipulated in their brief. That inspired the “We Create. You Create” model, enabling a huge commercial opportunity to streamline this process.
Launching this new kind of art platform generated its share of obstacles, including negative responses from the community. Some enjoy art for its origins, as a single piece captures what the artist was feeling at that particular moment. But this platform isn’t changing the story behind the artwork unlike massive artists in this age: Take Jeff Koons on his Louis Vuitton collaboration with the Mona Lisa; he changed the colour of the portrait and printed them on its products.
“We are not trying to compose the art. We’re retaining integrity because we are controlling the artwork. We are making the market accessible to the public to choose and curate artwork whilst maintaining the integrity of the artist,” she emphasises. “It’s funny because if you want to be tech-forward and progressive in this industry, you need to constantly innovate and be different.”
Red T Multiples has partnered with HKWalls, a non-profit that organises murals to be painted across walls of Hong Kong. With this partnership, individuals can choose a section from the mural and make it their unique Multiple to take home.
In light of the accumulation of global waste, Nugent wants to grow a sustainable business. She developed Red T 360 Canvas, a project enabling artwork to be printed on recycled linen from the hospitality industry. Set to launch in September 2021, Nugent has already partnered with The Upper House hotel, using their retired linens to print art, with plans for pillows as well.
Another project, Red T 360 Plastic, plans to develop a sculpture of recycled pellets out of plastics collected in Hong Kong. It aims to rally community groups to collect and contribute plastics to process them for recycling. The pellets will then feed into a factory whereby the machines will form a recycled sculpture.
In the future, Nugent hopes that people will become more aware that people can customise art from curated work.
“On a B2B scale, I wish to work with large design firms of the world and that they utilise my platform for their hotels, restaurants and other projects,” she says. “Lastly, I hope that museums and galleries will have my platform as an application to add value to their museum. This is so that others can access any type of artwork on the platform to curate something specifically for them. An artist I wish to partner with is Kehinde Wiley. Despite his portraits not being suitable for multiples, his backgrounds would be amazing to capture.”
Aesthetes can schedule a free consultation with Tamsin. For more information, visit redtmultiples.com.