Ashland Based 1000Museums Celebrates 5 Years

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By Alan Oppenheimer and Megan Grant 
 Via blog post at 1000museums.com/blog/

July marks the new 1000Museums’ five-year anniversary, a huge milestone for our entire team! 

This month we’re celebrating two industry-leading fine art companies joining forces: Art Authority and 1000Museums.

Art Authority got its start in 2008 and focused on classic art exploration and education through award-winning apps. 1000Museums started around the same time, bringing that same classic art from museums to art lovers through technology-driven top-quality reproductions. Putting the two together, in July 2016, has resulted in the best of both worlds, for art museums, creators and lovers worldwide.

We dreamt of a revolutionary company that connected museums directly to the public, allowing customers to bring their favorite pieces of fine art directly into their homes. For the past 5 years, we have seen that dream realized.

We built our company with a clear focus on providing the highest quality products while building long lasting relationships with our museum partners, artists and customers. This goal required the utmost attention to detail and commitment to giving back. Nurtured in the idyllic town of Ashland, Oregon, 1000Museums has been driven by a small group of passionate individuals who were committed to the mission. This has allowed us to serve both our retail customers and museum partners at the highest level year after year, establishing a trusting relationship along the way. We are incredibly proud of the success we have achieved and we thank our community for being a part of it.

We look forward to many more years of printing and sharing iconic art by connecting the most distinguished museums and artists in the world with art lovers everywhere.

We Love Museums

We created 1000Museums with the intention of utilizing technology to offer the highest quality, authentic reproductions of museum art. In order to make our dream a reality, we partnered directly with the most respected museums in the world to ensure that we match the art that is actually hanging in their halls. Our museum partners personally inspect our print masters to verify that even the most minuscule details are perfectly depicted. In fact, many of them sell our fine art reproductions in their retail stores and use those reproductions in their shows.

We want museums to thrive, so we make it easy for people to support their favorite institutions through the purchase of archival reproductions and as well as sharing the latest exhibitions around the world. By increasing the exposure of the museums’ collections, we bring additional people in their doors and raise awareness on a global scale. We are also a charter sponsor of the Museum Store Association and Museum Store Sunday.

Perhaps most importantly, we pay royalties in return for the rights to manufacture and sell our museum-approved reproductions. We are proud to say that since 2016, we have returned over $400,000 in royalties to our museum partners and artists. We are committed to making a positive impact on museums and have made it one of our primary business goals to grow the amount we pay every year.

Bringing 1000Museums to Life

Art Authority acquired 1000Museums in 2016 not just to continue their mission, but also as a way to provide art lovers with physical prints of their favorite paintings. Long before that, Art Authority had been creating innovative software solutions designed to bring art to life through technology. It all began with an iPhone app that was launched on the very first day the App Store was available in 2008. Then Art Authority for iPad, launched the very first day the iPad shipped, quickly became a best-selling educational and reference app. Today Art Authority’s award-winning app line offers customers over 100,000 works of art to explore.

On ArtAuthority for iPad…

“An experience unlike any other.” – The New York Times

“Visually dazzling.” – The Mac Observer

“Best iPad reference app.” – App Store editorial team

The 1000Museums Team

The four partners at the heart of Art Authority, Mac, Stanley, Alan, and Jim, came together over a common love for art and technology. 

Each provided unique skills that allowed the company to quickly become a dominant force in the art world. Jim and Alan, skilled in the technological world, spearheaded the creation of the award winning app line. In addition, Mac Holbert’s exceptional skills in digital printmaking and Stanley’s experience as the founder and CEO of a professional photographic and digital lab, and head of imaging at the Getty Museum,  allowed Art Authority to quickly become an esteemed enterprise.

Alan Oppenheimer, the brilliant MIT-educated partner, heads up marketing and sales and business management. 

Stanley Smith, the photographer, with decades of digital experience at museums such as the Getty runs the day to day printing and framing operations. 

R Mac Holbert, the digital photo master, makes our images look exactly like the original and keeps quality a primary target in our company. 

Jim Teece, resident tech head, manages the tech that drives the company, including our new 1000Museums.com website.

As a small company, we pride ourselves on the care and attention that is invested in each of our products.

We care deeply about the quality of our products, the relationship with our museum partners, the environment, our community, our employees, and our customers. All of our inks are non-toxic and we recycle all paper waste, furthering our commitment to minimize our carbon footprint in every way we can. We believe that we were initially successful because we founded our company with people that genuinely care about the value of sharing art with the world, and we have kept that focus ever since.

Our Process

The first step in bringing museum-quality art prints to your wall is taking high-resolution digital photographs of artwork. Next, our skilled digital printmaker, Mac, works with the museums to ensure that the digital photo, when printed, is a perfect reflection of the original art. 

After we have acquired the digital version of the art (along with any copyrights needed), Jim and his team make it available on the 1000Museums website and Alan’s team works to get it in the museums’ retail stores (onsite and online). When a print is ordered, Stanley’s team uses advanced print-on-demand technology to create an archival top-quality print on either paper or canvas.

Many orders request a custom frame, which is also created by our veteran craftspeople. 

The final product is then carefully packaged and shipped to your doorstep. And you take it from there!

Finally (our favorite part of the process) we give back to our museum partners. Not only do we increase the exposure of their collections and their retail store revenue, we have paid nearly a half million in royalties over the past five years.

How The Frames Are Made

We wanted to provide our customers with the finest custom frames, keeping cost in mind. We started by securing the best materials. We use the highest quality wood and frame each print with precision-cut, acid-free mat board before mounting it behind a UV-blocking semi-gloss plexiglass. This particular glass is designed to flawlessly protect your art from potential damage caused by the sun, dust, pollution, heat, and humidity. Finally, we add finishing touches like a wall hanging mount, wall friendly bumpers, and a protective backing. 

A product is only as great as the hands that built it, so we partnered with master craftspeople who have decades of experience in the field. We are proud to say that almost all of our customers report that they are more than satisfied with the quality of our frame.

1000Museums is honored to celebrate this exciting five year achievement… and we hope you are, too! Our loyal customers are the reason we have been able to realize our dream of creating a powerful connection between museums and art lovers around the world.

Best-Selling Prints on 1000Museums.com

To celebrate our anniversary, check out our top five most popular paintings over the last five years!

1. Supine Woman

In 1963 Wayne Thiebaud strayed from his classic paintings of confections to create Supine Woman, one of his rare figurative works. Its pleasingly neutral color palette and impressive depiction of the human form has cemented Supine Woman as one of our most beloved paintings.

2. Pacific

Perhaps Alex Colville’s most dramatic painting,  Pacific features a cool-toned ocean scene in which the eye is immediately drawn to the handgun in the forefront of the picture. Its powerful imagery has caused the meaning and symbolism of Pacific to be vigorously debated to this day.

3. The Corn Poppy

Kees van Dongen is known for his portraits of high-society women, but few have left as dramatic of an impression as The Corn Poppy. This painting features a woman with dramatic eyes and a strikingly red hat, emblematic of his participation in the Fauve Movement.

4. From Line

Lee Ufan created From Line using singular brush strokes tracing from the top to the bottom of the painting, a regimented technique which is said to represent the passage of time. From Line’s beauty and simplicity is reminiscent of meditation, encouraging the viewer to slow down and ponder each disappearing line.

5. Enassamishhinjijweian

Created in 2009,  Enassamishhinjijweian (don’t try to pronounce it!) features a nature scene bursting with wildlife and color. Tom Uttech designed this painting as an ode to the beauty of the natural world, adorning the 9 foot-tall painting with the stunning colors of a majestic sunset in the wilderness.

Our Vision for the Next 5 Years

As we reflect on our past and look forward to our future, it is our sincere hope that each and every one of you will continue to support our mission of helping museums thrive by bringing authentic prints of the world’s most seminal art straight to your door. The power of art has moved society for thousands of years, and museums are an essential part of preserving that history for future generations. We’re excited for what the next 5 years (and beyond!) have in store for us, and look forward to continuing our journey with you. 

Learn more and shop at 1000Museums.com

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