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"The Horizon", 2013
"The Horizon", 2013Maja Cule

Just how do you sell digital art in the 21st century?

The next generation of contemporary art is here and it's going under the hammer

What does ‘art’ look like in the digital age? This summer (June 18 – July 2), Tumblr and Phillips will collaborate with curator Lindsay Howard to launch Paddles ON! – the UK’s very first exhibition and auction dedicated entirely to digital art.The auction had a successful launch back last October in New York, with partial proceeds going to Rhizome, a non-profit that supports emerging practices engaged with technology. Collating artwork prominently from the Tumblr community the UK version will present 22 of the the next generation of artists using digital technologies to establish exciting new modes of expression. From architectural manipulation in Google Earth to artwork composed entirely of algorithms, the work seeks to examine how our experiences are now entirely shaped by digital technologies. Plus longtime Dazed favourite, Arcadia Missa have got two of their artists featured in the auction, Maja Cule and Amalia Ulman

"While many contemporary artists incorporate some aspect of the digital into their practices, the artists in Paddles ON! are recognized for continuing a tradition started in the 1960s by engaging critically with various aspects of digital technologies," says Howard in her curatorial essay that accompanies the sale. 

The project marks a brand new era in the auction world. Megan Newcome, Paddles On! Head of Sale also says, "It's rare that you have the opportunity to create a truly new market in the auction world – it happens about once every 30-40 years – if the interest in digital art continues to grow, it’s exciting that Paddles ON! has been a catalyst for that!".

The freshly curated digital art auction will give 100% of the sale profits to the artists and participating galleries. A portion of the buyer’s premium will also be donated to Opening Times, a not-for-profit online commissioning body and platform for online art.