Photo by Michael Barrett
Its motto says it all. ART HUNT is a curated, online art gallery that offers one-of-a-kind work from up-and-coming artists living around the world. In addition, ART HUNT highlights a southern artist every week in its “52South” series.
Co-owners Louise Hooker and Destin C. Wilson’s mutual love of art, hunting and traveling inspired the website’s name and motto. Louise Hooker is an art school-educated art broker established in Jackson. For nearly eight years she has been responsible for compiling PORTICO’s annual Artists Rising lists.
Louise actually put her brokering dreams on hold until 2008 while she worked sales and marketing at American Airlines and John Hancock Financial Services. “I started doing the PORTICO feature and meeting emerging Mississippi artists. From there I did more southern shows for other people and everything kind of took off,” Louise explains. She is now well-known for her brokering skills, years of pop-up art shows and gallery events.
Following a PORTICO art show, the number of people who purchased the pieces online versus in person surprised Louise. She believed she could reach more customers if she focused her energy toward internet sales. “Every generation buys everything online. With technology now, it’s really easy to shop for items online that you couldn’t before,” Louise says.
As fellow artists and art lovers, Louise and Destin extensively research galleries all over the US. Destin is now her business partner while he continues to serve as an attorney and popular artist in his own right. Together, their investigations found that fifty percent of sales in galleries actually take place on the Internet instead of face-to-face.
Louise and Destin dove headfirst into creating ART HUNT’s online gallery with the tagline, “Let us hunt the art...you collect it!”
While some clients might hesitate to make such significant and individualized purchases without seeing the work of art in person at a traditional brick and mortar gallery, have no fear! ART HUNT’s user-friendly website presents many technological features that allow the buyer to experience the art almost as they would in person. High definition zoom tools highlight every detail of the composition from color to the texture of brush strokes. The site even lets you step into a virtual room and see the work on different walls to get perspective.
Part of the joy of owning art is not only loving it aesthetically but also getting to know the artist who created your treasured piece. “Our spotlight artists are from all over the world—Paris to California—and we will put up in-depth bios. Our weekly featured southern artist for 52South will have a Q and A format to highlight his or her personality,” Louise reveals.
“One of the greatest joys of art brokering is helping artists sell their first pieces, and helping buyers find art that they truly love,” explains Louise. Like any great hunter, using instinct, intuition and a keen eye, ART HUNT’s catch can be your prize.
Visit arthunt-gallery.com for more information.