Rapid advances in technology that have occurred in recent years have offered opportunities across all industries, changing the way that business is transacted, and the art market is no exception.

Not only can technology now be used to create art, it has also been the driver behind the development of a number of innovative tools and digital platforms. Tools including cloud based inventory management systems, ‘object specific’ security solutions, remote monitoring for alarms and streamlined digital condition reporting are now being utilised by collectors, artists and industry practitioners to manage their collections and safeguard the security and condition of their works.

Transactions in the art market have traditionally been based on a foundation of trust and reputation. The demand for greater transparency when buying and selling art concerning purchase terms, the condition of the work and provenance, are all important considerations to buyers today. While establishing authenticity helps to provide peace of mind to collectors as well as protect the artists’ rights.

A number of start-ups are now using blockchain, the technology behind Bitcoin, with a view to improving transparency and issues of authenticity and ownership in the industry, offering digital provenance to physical works of art. While forensic tagging is also being used by artists to verify the authenticity of original artworks.

For those that are looking to exhibit their works, Vastari uses their secure technology to connect collectors and institutions worldwide for exhibition loans and tours, as well as providing a unique platform for museums to list and exchange exhibitions with other institutions worldwide. By exhibiting at some of the world’s leading museums, collectors benefit from increasing the cultural significance of their collection whilst the institutions benefit from accessing previously unseen works.

What do these developments mean for our clients?

It is likely that these technology trends will continue to develop in order to keep pace with the demands of the modern art industry.

Whether you embrace these new solutions to improve the management of your collection, exhibit works or verify their authenticity, it is important to ensure that you are adequately protected in the event of any loss or damage.

With works being displayed in your home, in secure storage, on the walls of a museum or in transit in between, comprehensive all risks insurance will give you the comfort that you will be adequately compensated following a physical loss. In addition, defective title insurance is available which provides protection against contested ownership. In the event of a loss, maintaining an up-to-date digital inventory can be invaluable during the claims process, helping to facilitate the transmission of information to your insurers with ease.

For further information or assistance with any of your insurance needs, please contact Ruth Watson, Partner on +44 (0)207 466 6256 or email fineart@jltgroup.com