"Just joined @theartmarket_ca. What a great site to discover other artists in Canada."
- Thirteenth Avenue Gallery, calgary ab
Merete Kristiansen and Kate Barron may be on the verge of revolutionizing the Canadian art world. They have created an website for like nothing that exists anywhere else. And they’ve created it to bridge the gap between artists, art collectors, amateur art enthusiasts and art dealers. It’s called theartmarket.ca and it launches today.
A combination of Plenty of Fish and Craigslist for collectors and artist alike, the site could become the meet and greet of the visual art world. For the past 18 months and with the support of a private investor, Merete and Kate have spent their off hours (Merete works as a gallerist on South Granville and Kate is back in school studying real estate) pounding the pavement, going to events and meeting artists and dealers to show their support of the arts community.
These two Vancouver childhood friends, each coming together around an interest in art from different angles, perceived problems in the art world. For Kate, who describes herself as outside the art world, it was access to the galleries. For Merete, who is an insider, it was finding artists and connecting to the larger Canadian art world. “We decided that rather than complain about it, we would try to fix it.