23 September 2019
– ARTIVE’ s mission is in tune with the one of ArtLaw.club. We really do share your commitment to protect the world’s cultural heritage! Can you explain to our readers what is ARTIVE about in practical terms? How did your project start?
Our project started in 2016, when Artive was tasked with being the new custodian of the database that was built 2 years prior by the former Art Recovery group. We have since established ourselves as a 501 (c)3 non-profit and have turned our focus onto our grander vision and mission to provide an impartial and independent research platform. This change in focus also means that education, capacity building and raising awareness of the threat and the possible solutions are very important to our daily work. We want to inspire, encourage and enable individuals, communities and art market professionals to be part of our mission.
– How large is your community now?
We have come a long way since our creation in 2016 and are so proud to have gathered a group of highly motivated, dedicated and professional individuals who share our passion and our hopes for a better future. We now have a community of 15 ambassadors who help raise awareness of the work that Artive does in support of its mission to protect and persevere cultural heritage. We work with law enforcement agencies, museums, auction houses, and other cultural, financial and legal organizations around the world to create community engagement in due diligence practices.
– Do you have your own database or is ARTIVE an aggregate of the existing ones, or both? How many databases are already connected to ARTIVE?
Artive runs its own database. We maintain the most technologically advanced database with over 500 searchable fields and integrated image recognition technology. Our aim is to continue developing our system so that we may gain greater knowledge through big data analysis for example. Alongside its project, the “Open Access Initiative” to provide the public and professionals a freely accessible platform, we hope to address and bridge the information gap that exists between independent, disparate and commercial databases by offering an independent and impartial platform for due diligence checks that links to other valuable resources on claimed cultural property.
– Currently, due diligence research is quite an expensive process. Are there any services that you provide free of charge? How do you value the availability of ARTIVE’s services if compared to other existing separate databases?
At Artive we believe that a standard due diligence check shouldn’t be a case of affordability. All registrations are free of charge. However, we do currently charge for our expertise in searching against the Artive Database and other specialist databases when creating due diligence reports. All services are free of charge for law enforcement agencies. Our main and most ambitious project is to provide an open access platform with the data collected made available at no-cost to art market professionals, academics, students, researchers, and the wider public. This project is fueled by Artive’s vision to create a safer marketplace and bring increased economic, reputational, legal security and transparency to the art market.
– Are you going to interconnect with the paid-in databases as well? If yes, would it impact the availability of ARTIVE’s database?
Our hope is to interconnect with as many other resources as possible. How connections to paid-in databases will impact the availability of our database is hard to predict at the moment. It will all depend on funding and the willingness of paid-in databases to collaborate, in which way possible, in the name of protection of cultural property.
– At your homepage you stress that the use of new technological solutions is at the core of ARTIVE’s work. Is it the blockchain that you use? What are the main benefits of the solutions provided by the modern world that you see?
We are certainly utilizing every technology available to ensure the independence and integrity of our data, including blockchain. Using modern technology has made the world a more connected and informed place in general. The impact of technology on provenance research is a wide area that can’t be covered in just one short answer. At Artive we are interested in transcending data, we want to go beyond recording data; can we add meaning to it? We believe that by translating digital records into knowledge, through big data analysis for instance, we can help shape a safer and more transparent future and ultimately help protect our shared heritage for future generations. Quicker access to documentations will help researchers and art market professionals to new findings that were not easily possible prior to the digitization of relevant resources.
– Are you oriented at any particular territory or is ARTIVE a global project?
Artive is a global project, and we make a conscious effort to reach lesser covered and lesser heard regions and communities who have suffered cultural losses or that are at risk of cultural losses. Raising awareness of these regions and building capacity to provide those communities with the technology, the training and support and the international outreach of their stories is very important to Artive. We continuously work on growing and improving our platform to support and encourage an end to the circulation of looted or stolen artefacts in the global art market.
In order to expand our impact and serve various regions and communities around the world, Artive continues to grow its database by collecting and digitizing information on at-risk and claimed works of art or cultural property and we’re calling for support of our Digital Outreach initiative.