Enplug, a leading cloud-based digital signage software provider, today announced Enplug Art – an initiative to collaborate with contemporary artists and some of the world’s most notable museums to bring more than 1,000 works of contemporary and classic art to Internet-connected displays and TVs. This is the first initiative of its kind to bring professionally curated classic and contemporary art into established AV networks in corporate and academic settings, as well as Smart TVs in the home.
“Digital signage has traditionally been viewed as a medium reserved solely for corporate communication, but we’re breaking that mold and extending digital signage into the realm of art appreciation,” said Enplug CEO Nanxi Liu. “Bringing art into the workplace ensures that all screens are fully utilized, even when they’re sitting idle. And beyond this functional improvement, art brings immeasurable aesthetic value to professional venues in a way that nothing else can.”
New Exposure for Contemporary Artists
Today’s contemporary art movement is evolving quickly as artists embrace new content distribution models. The COVID-19 pandemic has placed further pressure on the contemporary art community, causing galleries to shutter temporarily and all but eliminating in-person events that would normally provide important touchpoints for artists to connect with prospective benefactors and customers. Enplug Art plays an important role in reviving these connections by enabling artists to reach new followers outside of their direct orbit. In the same way Instagram increases artists’ digital reach beyond gallery walls, Enplug Art achieves a similar result by enabling them to display their work in homes and offices around the globe.
Enplug Art is building a community of contemporary artists whose works will be featured on the platform. Three of the artists in this initial phase include Seamus Conley, Carlson Hatton and Sharon Lee:
Seamus Conley lives and works in both Los Angeles and San Francisco. A recipient of the Pollock-Krasner Award, his paintings have been exhibited throughout the U.S., including a solo museum exhibit at the Lancaster, CA Museum of Art and History. Conley’s work has been featured in publications such as Hi Fructose, San Francisco Chronicle, San Francisco Examiner, San Francisco Weekly, Empty Mat, Bliss Mag and American Art Collector.
“Some of the greatest artists are known for pushing boundaries and challenging people to think more openly and view the world from a different perspective. I see a bit of that spirit in what Enplug is doing with its Art App, empowering artists to embrace technology in a new way to share their craft with a much more diverse audience. I’ve always wanted my work to reflect the ethereal and intangible nature of what art can be, and this digital platform is ideal for communicating that concept,” commented Seamus Conley.
Carlson Hatton lives and works in Los Angeles. A professor of art at Santa Monica College, his work has been shown extensively in group exhibitions throughout the greater Los Angeles area, with solo exhibitions at Patrick Painter Gallery in Santa Monica, Ruth Bachofner Gallery in Santa Monica and Weekend Gallery in Los Angeles. Hatton’s work has been featured extensively in print, including the Los Angeles Times, Art Ltd, Artillery Magazine, New American Paintings, Art Forum, Voyage, Art and Cake, and Crave.
Commenting on his inclusion in Enplug’s Art App, Carlson Hatton said, “Art is all about accessibility – making it easier to unite artists with people who appreciate and support the contemporary art scene. I’m happy to be a part of this movement to bring contemporary art within reach of a much broader audience. I’m interested in art being made available as something that we live and grow with. Whether found in galleries, on the street, or within the digital realm, art has a beautifully sneaky way of getting into one’s mind and opening up avenues of interpretation and enrichment.”
Sharon Lee is a Korean-American fine artist and founder of Krane Home. Inspired by her mother and grandfather, both artists, Sharon’s art modernizes traditional techniques with a signature process that involves hand-carving, block-printing, gold leaf and lacquer. She has exhibited her work at venues such as the Korean Cultural Center and currently at the Four Seasons Resorts Hawaii on an ongoing basis since 2016. Sharon turns her art into home décor as the founder of Krane Home. Her paintings and décor have been featured widely in major design publications, including House Beautiful, Architectural Digest, Traditional Home and Luxe Magazine.
“Since the pandemic has been a challenging time for artists who rely on in-person events, Enplug’s Art App is a wonderful, innovative solution to connect more viewers with more art. As a Korean-American artist, my paintings seek to modernize and expand the story of ancient Korean art into today’s home, so I love that Enplug is making fine art more accessible. Vivid color schemes and symbolic motifs layered throughout my paintings using mixed media techniques make my art stand out in digital form,” said Sharon Lee.
Through exclusive partnerships with Enplug, these contemporary artists now have access to a much vaster potential audience, showcasing their work to a diverse universe of individuals who appreciate art but aren’t necessarily plugged into the local art scene.
A Modern Twist on Institutional Art Collections
Corporations, universities and other large institutions often possess their own private art collections. Some pieces are displayed in lobbies and conference rooms, while more valuable works are often displayed in executive offices. Many (if not most) works are kept in storage and rarely on display. Enplug Art is democratizing this process, enabling these institutions to feature artwork on any and all network-connected screens, without having to catalogue, store and ship artwork between offices when rotating collections.
Bringing Art into the Home
In addition to bringing art into the workplace, Enplug is also bringing art into the home as a free service for anyone using Apple TV, Amazon Fire TV Stick or Nvidia Shield to stream to their home televisions. Additionally, the latest-generation smart TVs can stream Enplug Art directly without requiring a standalone streaming device. With pervasive adoption of in-home internet-connected televisions, many household entertainment centers also double as their own digital signage network, capable of displaying the same works of art now available to institutional users of Enplug’s digital signage platform. Unlike consumer-grade “smart frames” that require purchase of a separate display, Enplug Art lets people display art on their existing smart TVs without any up-front or recurring costs.
How it Works
Enplug Art’s most important point of differentiation is that it’s hardware-agnostic. Whether a user is a homeowner with a single TV or a corporate campus with a thousand end-points, Enplug Art takes advantage of established digital signage networks and smart TVs already installed in the home. Simply create an account on Enplug, open your TV’s web browser, pair the TV (or TVs), and then activate the Art App to enjoy Enplug’s extensive collection of curated art in the home.
A Cut Above Traditional Smart Frames
Consumer-grade smart frames bring art into the home, but they’re expensive and they require in-wall electrical work for a clean installation. With Enplug Art, the service is free and users take advantage of screens already in place, so there’s nothing to buy and no installation is required.
Making Art Freely Available
Enplug is on a mission to expand art accessibility. To that end, Enplug Art is free to existing institutional customers, and free to new home users. Organizations that currently subscribe to Enplug’s monthly or annual plans can activate the app at no charge. Home users simply sign up for a free Enplug Art home account to access the same vast collection of art available to Enplug’s business customers.
For more information about Enplug and its full portfolio of digital signage software solutions, visit www.enplug.com. Follow Enplug on Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn to stay up to date on the company’s latest news.