Customer in the Spotlight: Art in the Home

Art can take a home or office space to the next level. Not just because of the aesthetic aspect. Art is also a conversation starter, awakens emotions and encourages creativity. More and more people are becoming convinced of this. However, art often also comes with a price tag: the barrier to getting a work into your home is not infrequently large. Fortunately, there are initiatives like Art in the House, which allow you to borrow and even buy art easily and at affordable rates.

The organization promotes contemporary up-and-coming artists from Flanders and Brussels, giving them a solid push to start their professional careers. The collection now consists of more than 5,000 works by some 370 artists. A wonderful initiative that we were eager to learn all about. We sat down with communications officer Jolien Deweerdt for more text and explanation.

Hey Jolien, can you first explain how the Art in the House initiative actually came about?

‘Art at Home has now been in existence for 44 years. The idea originated in 1988. At the time, several cultural centers joined forces to make contemporary visual art more attainable and accessible to the general public. The approach was twofold. On the one hand, the intention was to introduce people to emerging artists and their work in an approachable way. On the other hand, they wanted to give that emerging talent more visibility, giving them a boost. To this day, that concept remains the core of Art at Home.

So how exactly does Art in the House work?

‘Kunst in Huis offers a home to new generations of budding artists and has branches in Antwerp, Ghent, Leuven, Brussels and Kortrijk. Currently, our collection consists of some 5,000 works by some 370 artists. The collection is constantly growing and ranges from photography and illustrations over painting to spatial and graphic work. As an individual, you can borrow the works and purchase them if you wish. For this we use a subscription formula of 12 euros per month which can be cancelled monthly. You can also exchange the artworks as often as you like, so you can regularly get something new in your home. All artworks can be seen on our website, where you can also reserve them in a branch of your choice.’

Magazine for the Expo of Art at Home

The collection is divided into two segments: one for individuals and one for businesses. Where is the difference?

‘Currently, about 150 companies have subscriptions. For them there are two separate formulas. The Mono subscription means that for a fixed annual amount you can choose and collect 1 to 4 works of art yourself. The Multi-subscription is slightly more extensive: for a fixed amount per year they can borrow 5 artworks or more. In this case, we first organize an online meeting to clarify the concept and listen to your needs and interests. Then our artistic advisor will come by to take stock of the situation on site and work out an artistic proposal for the rooms in question. Of course, you are not bound by this. You can also choose your own works. Once your choice is made, the works are delivered and hung by a colleague. The interesting thing is that everything is 100% tax deductible.’

Presumably a lot of people are thinking about renting art. What if they are interested, but want to wait a while to see what’s going on?

‘Renting art is obviously not an overnight decision, we understand. On our website, you can easily create a profile and like artworks. That way you get an idea of what’s possible and what you like, you can leave everything as long as you like and subscribe at another time. Also our
is interesting to follow for that reason. On the page, we are always posting new artists and artworks that we are including in the collection.’

Gift Box Art in the Home

“There is active scouting by our artistic director and an outside panel of experts, who we call ‘the Good Noses’ ourselves.”

You provide a stage for emerging artists, how exactly does that collaboration work?

‘We are constantly looking for emerging talent to expand our collections. It is actively scouted by our artistic director Claudine Hellweg and an external jury of experts, whom we ourselves call “the Good Noses. We also host an open call twice a year where artists can submit their own applications to collaborate with Art in the House. More and more talent is finding its way to those selections. And not only because you are much more visible as an artist through our website, Instagram and events such as Antwerp Art Weekend, showcase projects and exhibitions in our branches. Per rental, you will receive a loan fee. If your work is sold, you get 70% of the income. That’s a lot more than in the average gallery.’

You chose Buroform as your printing partner. As a printing company, how do we fit into your story?

‘Art at Home itself strives for quality in everything we do. We found that philosophy with you as well. Moreover, we do not have a graphics team of our own. The fact that there is so much expertise at Buroform helped win us over. We distribute a lot of printed materials in cultural centers, from flyers and leaflets to posters. Then it is important that your material is not only sturdy and quality, but also really stands out visually. People feel much more engaged when a message is applied in a beautiful and sustainable way. In addition, we also offer art vouchers in an art box, which we also commission from you. Such gifts should be bang on and we just know it will be right with you.