Art and tech

PERSONALIZATION remains a big selling point in a market like the Philippines. As observed during the last holiday season, various online sellers and retailers promote their products with the option to personalize, certainly becoming a big hit to those who prefer to personalize their gifting experience to friends, family, and even corporate clients.

This personalization experience extends to art, and one would notice the many artists promoting their craft online, thereby creating new products and opportunities at this time when art and technology seem to be overlapping (or not). Interesting art-based gifts or services that are available online include digital mini-museums (a personal favorite), mural paintings (when an artist paints your wall based on your chosen design or peg), family sketches, and many others. In the age of AI, this process of engaging with an artist and jointly working on a personalized/curated/customized piece of art is an experience that no digital platform or technology capability can replace. This significant human experience is what makes the back-and-forth activity valuable and, in the long run, sustainable.

Art emerges as a vital force that not only sustains human connections but also unlocks new and exciting business opportunities. In fact, age and even geography would not be factors anymore as anyone — young and old living somewhere on Earth — skilled in this space can basically sell their art regardless of where the customer is. Art then becomes a good respite as technology continues to dominate our lives; the need for artistic expression becomes more pronounced than ever. It serves as a powerful means of communication, allowing individuals to express emotions, explore diverse perspectives, and forge connections that transcend the boundaries of screens and algorithms. Art indeed gives a nice break to balance the digital aspects of our lives with the ones that are not.

From a benefit standpoint, one of the remarkable aspects of the digital age is the democratization of art through online platforms. Artists can now showcase their work to a global audience, breaking down geographical barriers. E-commerce for art sales has flourished, creating entrepreneurial opportunities for artists and facilitating a direct connection between creators and art enthusiasts worldwide. This shift in the art market transforms traditional notions of galleries and exhibitions, making art more accessible and inclusive. It creates new opportunities to serve new markets that were previously not present.

Does this mean that art and technology overlap? Not necessarily. In fact, technology not only facilitates the dissemination of art but also plays a pivotal role in its creation. Digital art creation tools and platforms have given rise to new forms of artistic expression, attracting innovators and tech enthusiasts. This intersection of art and technology cultivates a unique market for software developers and tech companies, fueling economic growth in these sectors. Think of technology in art as a supplement to our artists out there — it is not necessarily creating the art and replacing the artist per se but rather supplements the artist to create their work in a more efficient way, something that AI drives (efficiency) vis a vis the emotive qualities of human-made art, both of which are crucial considerations.

In essence, art not only thrives in the digital age but becomes a driving force for human connection and entrepreneurship. As we navigate this tech-dominated world, the fusion of creativity and technology not only enriches our cultural experiences but also opens doors to innovative business ventures, shaping a dynamic and interconnected future as it brings forth new opportunities to invest and look into.

The use of AI to generate images introduces a fascinating dynamic to the art scene in the digital age. It will continue to open new business opportunities, challenge traditional notions of creativity, and spark discussions about the evolving nature of artistic expression and human connection in a technologically advanced era. Companies, organizations, and individuals in this space, both in technology and art, should observe with keen eyes as this landscape evolves.

Kay Calpo Lugtu is the chief operating officer of Hungry Workhorse, a digital and culture transformation firm. Her advocacies include food innovation, nation-building and sustainability. The author may be reached at kay.lugtu@hungryworkhorse.com.