Support for arts and culture

Innovative art purchase scheme soars

Global auction house invests in Art Money.

Art Money

A scheme to boost original art purchases at local galleries first supported by the City of Sydney is set to get even bigger, following an investment from global auction house Christie’s.

Promising interest-free finance for original art purchases through galleries in and around our local area, Art Money received seed funding from the City of Sydney in 2014.

The program makes it easier for people to buy art by paying over time, interest-free, rather than upfront.

Art Money grows

Art Money launched in 2015 and within a year was offered in 35 Sydney galleries and 140 galleries nationally, generating over $1.7 million in artwork sales.

It’s now a global fin-tech name with 1,750 gallery partners from 50 countries and more than 7,000 clients across Australia, the US, UK and New Zealand.

In February 2023, Christie’s Ventures – the new venture capital arm of global auction house Christie’s – purchased shares in Art Money.

The goal? To support artists to sell more work at higher price points and benefit from auction sales, through resale royalties.

Default way to buy art

Art Money founder and CEO Paul Becker wants Art Money to be the default way people buy art.

“I think this is a great example of a public/private partnership making a real impact for artists and a sustainable creative economy,” Becker said.

“The City of Sydney had real foresight when it made the original grant and that investment has been leveraged many times over for the Sydney and Australian arts ecosystem, and now globally.

“Christie’s validation of our business model will accelerate our vision of increased access to art and an art world that helps shape tomorrow for the better.”

Clover Moore, Lord Mayor of Sydney said that part of the City of Sydney’s commitment to a city with a beating cultural heart is to give as many people as possible greater access to the art they love.

By reducing financial barriers for artwork sales, we’re encouraging more people to buy art for the first time, exposing local artists to larger audiences and equipping local galleries with new sales tools.

“Art Money is a landmark program that makes art accessible to people from all walks of life. It encourages more people to buy art for the first time, exposes local artists to wider audiences and potential sales, and provides a welcome boost for local galleries," the Lord Mayor said.

“The City of Sydney’s support for Art Money is just one example of our ongoing commitment to ensuring that opportunities to engage in Sydney’s rich cultural life are available to everyone in our community.

“I’m proud to see how the program has grown from a startup working with a handful of galleries in inner Sydney to an internationally renowned model. This new investment is great validation of the program and will help increase Art Money’s impact.”

Find out more about Art Money.

Published 8 May 2023, updated 10 May 2023

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