British auction house Phillips has announced the launch of Dropshop, a digital platform designed to offer limited-edition releases of primary market art and objects.
Dropshop represents a new approach in the international auction space, partnering directly with active artists to make their work available for immediate purchase. This model could potentially alter the traditional dynamics between primary and secondary art markets. Phillips’ collaboration with artists spans from the initial conception to the final promotion of the artworks. All items will be available on Phillips’ Dropshop for a limited time, emphasizing the platform’s distinct offering.
Given the challenges faced by regional museums, Dropshop seeks to provide an alternative platform for artists and collectors. As Christine Miele, Phillips’ New Retail Sales Director, E-commerce, put it, the initiative was created in response to the generational shift of contemporary artists taking a more active role in self-representation.
Added Miele, “These regular ‘takeovers’ are designed to create a dedicated space for artists to directly engage with Phillips’ global collecting community, amplifying their own voice in a personal and impactful way.” Phillips intends to work closely with partners at every stage, from the initial idea and selection to the creation and marketing of the pieces.
The Dropshop platform is set to debut on 20 August, featuring works from Australian hyperrealist, Cj Hendry. Hendry’s contributions, which emphasize self-representation and market accessibility, will be highlighted. Her initial ‘drop’ will include a series of bronze crowns and a detailed drawing of a crown. An event on 19 August at 432 Park Avenue will precede the online release, offering attendees an interactive “treasure hunt” experience with inflatable plastic crowns.
Cj Hendry expressed her perspective on the collaboration, noting the potential of the Crowns theme to engage a diverse audience. Said Hendry, “I am honoured to collaborate with Phillips for their first-ever Dropshop edition, and flattered to be the first for this venture. The theme of the drop is Crowns and, between the limited-edition bronze crowns available online and the live event taking place at Phillips HQ, we are bringing the concept into reality; there really is something for everyone here.”