Gallery owner, Annka Kultys, was interviewed by Expanded Art about her interest and background in collecting digital art.
WHY DO YOU COLLECT ART, ANNKA KULTYS?
DIGITAL ART AND NEW MEDIA
Collecting digital art was never a goal for me per se, in fact the very opposite; I came to collecting digital works by chance as part of something bigger. While the majority of my collection still comprises paintings, my interest in the medium was initially piqued when I acquired two digital installations, the first, a small video installation by Neïl Beloufa, purchased on the advice of François Ghebaly, the French gallerist based in Los Angeles, followed by a digital work by Korakrit Arunanondchai, which was part of a larger installation that included a large bean bag, sculpture and painting.
This nascent interest subsequently blossomed into creating a dedicated space that embraces new media and all the innovative forms of artistic expression that accompany new technology. Since opening my gallery in Hackney, East London in 2015, I have focused on promoting young artists and especially digital natives, such as Stine Deja, Signe Pierce, Rachel de Joode, Aaron Scheer and !Mediengruppe Bitnik. If Duchamp’s BOÎTE-EN-VALISE, which unfolds to reveal a mini-museum containing tiny replicas and reproductions of his most famous works, can be interpreted as the artist’s attempt to write his own epitaph, then I like to think of the gallery as my own boite en valise, a platform where I can curate seminal experiences around new media art for the viewing public, including my fellow collectors.
Annka Kultys is the founder and owner of Annka Kultys Gallery, a contemporary new media art gallery in London. During Covid the gallery launched [The art happens here], an online platform dedicated to showcasing digital art in its ‘natural habitat’.
Kultys is also a member of AWITA (the Association of Women in the Arts); a patron of Fluxus Art Projects, the Franco-British charitable association supporting artists in both countries under the umbrella of the French Ministry of Culture and the British Council of Arts; as well as an external board member at the Employability Advisory Board at the University of Westminster in London, assisting newly graduated art students find work in the art world.