We are more than happy to announce our collaboration with French Art influencer, Clara Herraiz. With more than 9000 Followers together on Instagram and TikTok, Clara knows exactly how to make art entertaining to her audience by creating fun, dynamic and intelligent content on her social media platforms.
After being disappointed in the elitist and cold art industry, Clara decided to create content about contemporary art that would answer the demand of the new generation. And it worked. Every Wednesday, Clara publishes a Vlog on her IGTV channel about an exhibition happening in a Parisian art gallery. It's the perfect way to enjoy an art experience in the comfort of your home. She also posts short videos on her TikTok, where she explains the artwork of an artist in a very simple way for example.
This is what we love about Clara, she makes art discovery extremely cool. No need to be an art expert to enjoy or buy art anymore.
Clara, could you start by telling me about yourself and your background? When did you decide to pursue a career in the art market?
Well, first of all, I had the chance to grow up in a very artistic family environment. I was used to going to museums, concerts, theaters, and I grew up surrounded by art at home. But it was in high school, only after meeting an art dealer, that I knew that I wanted to work in the mediation and commercialization of art, just like her.
In order to achieve this goal, I did a Bachelor's degree in Art History at the University of Lyon in France. My passion for contemporary art developed a lot during this period. I mastered the theoretical part but I was still lacking professional skills, so I decided to go to Paris to do a Master's degree in Art Market Management.
During these two years, I learnt a lot about the contemporary art scene, and I literally loved what I saw. I also had an overview of the world of galleries, auction houses and all those companies involved in the development of the art market.
During the last year of my Master's degree, I did an incredible internship that prepared me very well for the job market. Shortly after I graduated, I set up my own business as a freelance Content & Community Manager. Today, I live from my passions, doing communication missions for media, gallery owners, companies that are specialized in contemporary art and its market!
I love your Instagram and TikTok accounts! Art From Future's mission is to make art more fun and accessible, and I think you do it very well! Can you tell me about your motivations to democratize art through short and entertaining videos?
Thank you! There were two triggering factors:
The first was simply a disappointment in my professional environment. After an internship in an art gallery, several meetings and testimonials, I had the feeling that most experts in this field evolve in a rather negative environment. They take themselves too seriously, underestimate people with less knowledge in arts and culture as well as the younger generation, and they are intimately convinced that "it was better before". It felt like being cold and judgmental was the attitude to adopt to be part of this environment.
I consider myself to be a bit the opposite of this mentality. I like to laugh, I like to be positive, I like to be close to people, and I don’t take myself too seriously. Yet I shared two huge common points with these people: passion and intellectual knowledge of contemporary art. At that moment, I began to wonder if entertainment and contemporary art were compatible. And I didn't even need to think long about a solution because Covid19 arrived!
And that was the second trigger: with lockdown in place, I was living with my parents and I had to attend my classes and my internship online. Therefore, I needed an outlet to laugh, to think about something else and to get closer to my passion. Instagram & TikTok are incredible tools for that. I started to engage my small community, 500 subscribers maybe at the time. I was creating polls, talking about the artworks and artists I loved, while still being myself and keeping a fairly accessible tone of voice. And it worked out very well! Many people were very receptive and I was able to continue talking about contemporary art while remaining detached from the cold and elitist label that is often attached to the art industry!
Your audience is young, between 18-30 years old, right? What is the message you would like to convey through your content?
"Hey, I assure you that contemporary art can take you to an incredibly fascinating universe. It allows you to live a unique experience, you can open up to the world around you, you can understand your surroundings and learn more about yourself. And above all, you are ALL, without exception, able to live this experience in an entertaining and fun way. Trust me, I am here to guide you and transmit my passion!" This is the message I want to spread through my contents!
I want to share an intelligent, serious, historical discourse around contemporary art, but in a cooler and more modern way. I want to prove that we can talk about art, which is something that comes out of the intellectual domain, in an entertaining way. My challenge is to create a more fun and dynamic content without discrediting the discourse of an artist, a gallery or an institution, nor dumbing down my subscribers!
I feel like the art industry is still struggling to adapt to digital tools and to the fact that art can be entertaining. However, new consumers are younger and are looking for interactive and entertaining digital experiences. Do you think young artists should use TikTok as a complement to Instagram to connect with their audiences?
I believe that art in general is part of the intellectual realm. And that's fine, we shouldn't deny it or take it out of this "box". The problem is that it is difficult to associate levity, humour, and new technologies with art, because they have long been wrongly associated with mindlessness.
It was not until this global pandemic that most institutions and professionals (not all of them) became aware of the importance of social networks, digitalization and the strong demand for entertaining content. What's super interesting is that artists didn't wait for their colleagues, museums and galleries, to take the lead! When you look at TikTok, one of the social platforms with the youngest audience, you see very few museums and barely any art galleries. These art accounts have very low visibility and engagement. On the other hand, visual artists are doing very well on TikTok! Some show their creative process, the behind the scenes, and connect with their audiences by opening up their artistic universe. It works very well! They are able to get hundreds of thousands of views, Likes and Subscribers!
If we take a look at the art scene on TikTok, the artists are the ones who stand out the most. So yes, if they're comfortable with it, if they like producing "short videos”, and the very "natural”, "real life", "one shot" image of TikTok, I strongly encourage artists to join this network! It's a gold mine for them!In your opinion, what is the future of the art industry?
Well, I'm not going to predict anything at all, but I hope for many different things:
First of all, a strong digital engagement. Whether it's for their distribution channels or for the promotion of digital artists, I hope that the art industry will be able to keep up to date on these issues.
Then, the intention to renew itself. I hope that the cultural community will be aware that its audience has changed, has different needs, and its way of consuming is different. I think it is essential to know how to adapt.
The industry needs to be more youth-centered. I hope it will put young people at the heart of its concerns. Whether it's to target them as consumers or to recruit them for job positions, institutions have everything to gain by creating jobs and hiring younger people to work on more modern subjects and issues.
Finally, the art industry needs to be more inclusive. I hope it will have stronger social commitments towards important issues such as the environment, women's rights, the inclusion of socially excluded people, the fight against racism, and so on. The new audience expects a lot from the art industry on these issues! They are counting on us!
By the way, do you buy art? Can you show them to us? What advice would you give to young people who want to buy art for the first time?
I've never bought any artwork with my own money, but that hasn't stopped me from building up a small "collection" that I love!
The very first artwork I received as a gift was a work by Erpi, a street artist from Lyon. It was the summer just before I came back to Paris, it is super symbolic for me. I also have a limited edition photograph by an artist I love, Juno Calypso (Seawed Wrap - picture 1) and a Digigraphie by the American artist Steven Harington (Wavy Days - picture 2) (super original in the technical process, I like it very much). I also have a painting, a triptych made by the young artist Ugo Sebastiao (picture 3). Beyond the fact that I find him super talented, he is one of those people who made me want to do this job and who supported me a lot. So, you see, each work has its own story and that makes the experience of buying or owning art completely incredible and unique!
What are your plans for the future?
In the short term, I hope to develop my freelance missions as well as my activity as a content creator on social networks. My projects are growing very fast, I’m producing content on different platforms: I started posting on TikTok during the second lockdown, at the end of February I will start utilizing Twitch, and maybe someday I’ll start producing longer and more elaborate videos on YouTube. I also want to set up a small technical team so I can have more time to concentrate on writing bigger projects, and to look for funding to produce better quality content!
I have many projects for this year but what I enjoy most on a daily basis is to see that my audience is learning new things, and is discovering contemporary art, buying art, going to galleries and debating about anything and everything with me!
Finally, what is your favourite work on Art From Future platform?
I'm super sensitive to Sybille Goldet's work which I discovered thanks to Art From Future. For me, she makes some kind of "drawn photographs". I can feel all the intensity of the emotions when she captures her scene in the form of a drawing. There is something very authentic in her works, whether it's her line, the chosen moment of life, the composition. I think that today, in the world in which we live, we can't escape the reality of everyday life as it catches up with us.
Sybille Goldet’s works are a true testimony of our time, with a generation that lives in the present: instantaneity of the image (recording everything, filming everything, photographing everything as if memory were more important than the present moment), but also instantaneity of life: in 2020-2021, we live from day to day, we are forced to be in the present time because the future is every day uncertain.
And finally, the immediacy of death: the circulating disease reminds us that tomorrow everything can stop. It's Sibylle's way of depicting the daily life and what one can feel in this period, that I like in her work.Thank you very much Clara
Thank you Art From Future for letting me express myself through this interview. And an even bigger thank you for highlighting the contemporary art scene with such enthusiasm and for supporting all these young artists in their projects! Great things are coming, I'm sure!