Artsy is a Tech Startup powered by The Art Genome Project, which is a system mapping artists-artworks connections. Its mission is to make accessible all the world’s art to anyone, provided that they are connected to the internet. In 2016, Artsy launched a live auction platform where users can participate in auctions from leading art houses real-time, resulting in partnership with Christie’s. Entering April, the startup announced that it was acquiring ArtAdvisor and doubling down on its investment in Data Science.

ArtAdvisor for Artsy

With the acquisition this month, Artsy is bringing in ArtAdvisor co-founder Hugo Liu inside as a chief scientist.

According to Carter Cleveland, Artsy’s founder and chief executive officer, at Artsy’s core had been their dedication to the idea of “bringing together art and science,” which is one of the company’s five values. Liu is a specialist in artificial intelligence and data science, and Carter believes that he is the best person in the world to help Artsy deliver “a more personalized experience” as Artsy expands access to a larger universe of buyers and enthusiasts.

Liu, a leading artificial intelligence technologist, will be helping Artsy bring similar data-first offerings to its user base. Before co-founding ArtAdvisor with Lucas Zwirner, Liu was the chief scientist of trend-prediction app Hunch, a principal scientist at eBay who had worked on developing “taste-monitoring algorithms.” Liu noted that with Artsy, ArtAdvisor found a natural collaborator and a shared mission of making access to all the world’s art as intuitive as possible, empowering art collectors with better tools, insights, and using data to tell art’s story.

Artsy hosted 41 auctions in 2016 and is planning to quadruple the number this year.

Artsy’s investment in data science

Since 2016, before launching its live auction technology, Artsy has come up with a handful of competitions and projects inviting the public to contribute and be part of the digital experience. In November, together with music and audio platform SoundCloud, Artsy presented Collective Reality, a sensory art experience inside Faena Art’s Time Capsule.

Artsy then recruited arts publication and art marketplace experts into their team, collaborated with Microsoft HoloLens and Studio Drift, and hired a new head of marketing, Ilana Grossman. Artsy’s president, Sebastian Cwilich, said that the timing could not be better for us to double down on our investment in data science.