Meet the Curation Board: Kate Vass
Meet the Curation Board is a series that introduces the Art Blocks community to the board members and their backgrounds.
1. What is your background as it relates to art and design?
My professional background. Being an art dealer and collector with a pioneering physical gallery in art and tech directly connects to art. Art is a holistic term; it includes all: from architecture, music towards fine art and digital. I collect for many years, and in 2017 opened up Kate Vass Galerie, focusing on generative art.
2. What is your background as it relates to crypto?
My second expertise and profession lie in finance and asset management. Therefore, I am familiar with crypto for many years and follow the tendencies since its foundation. However, I started to invest and trade it only in 2018, which is also the year when I had an idea to host the first-ever art exhibition dedicated to blockchain art. It opened up in November 2018 at Kate Vass Galerie, name “Perfect and Priceless — value system on the blockchain.”
3. How would you describe your taste in art?
Taking into consideration the professional background, I have to divide my corporate and private art collection. I have expertise in photography and had followed the market for a long time until I discovered generative photography and studied the history of generative art. That raised more interest to collect contemporary art focusing on conceptual, digital, generative art. Nevertheless, regardless of the type, I always collect the artists I exhibit and the art that I feel a strong emotional connection to. When you look at millions of artworks, the eye becomes trained to recognize the gems. One rule I apply for my private collection is that I never keep the artwork if I get to know the artist and his personality turns out not as lovely as his art, I tend to get rid of the artwork; even though it may bring financial profit in the future, I prefer selling it or gifting it. I believe in the aura of the artwork, and this aura comes from the creator.
4. What got you interested in Art Blocks?
I got to know Erick Calderon as my dear collector. He has been following our gallery for many years and, in 2021, finally contacted us to buy some physical art of the pioneers of generative art. We talked and became friends, and I appreciate his vision and hard work to build such a great platform like Art Blocks. Kate Vass Galerie exhibited many artists physically within the gallery program and online during the pandemic , artists — who are in the program on AB. Therefore we have many common interests and tastes in the curation of the program. I value how much AB does for the generative art community.
5. When you review an Art Blocks project for curation, what qualities are you looking for?
I tend to review it as I review my program or artwork that I would be interested in potentially acquiring as an art collector. I want to see the unique, thoughtful project in at least one of the following: conceptually, technically, or esthetically. As I mentioned above, over the years, the eye gets trained to see the gems.
6. What is your overall vision for the curated collection at Art Blocks?
I think I am not the right person to talk about the vision of the curatorial program/collection at AB; at the end of the day, I like its more decentralized curatorial decision-making, based on the independent voting of 20 people. I think this independent voting is the right way to bring the most exciting projects to AB. I hope to see more of it and more potential new collectors who will join the community.
7. Is there anything you hope to see in future projects?
I think Erick has lots of surprises and will not let us get bored. I hope to see many talented artists that we’ve never heard of before and discover new young talents.