Medici is a way for supporters to find and offer regular support to artists they believe in. Their team launched in beta last month.
The idea is to bring back the idea of arts partrons. Only, by way of the Internet, it can be crowdsourced. So no one has to entirely support an artist, but together it can become substantive.
Todd Anderson, one of the three cofounders, said the site already has a small number of users: “We have 97 users. 59 artists and 38 patrons, though artists can support other artists through the site as well. There have been 85 monthly payments initiated with an average value of $3.06 per month.”
For now, artist signups are invite only, but you can request access here.
Many artists supplement themselves with a tip jar on their website. For really popular artists, it can be enough for them to quit their day jobs, but for most, though, it’s a tiny income stream. Medici’s team believes theirs is a better way, by creating a site that’s focused on convincing patrons to commit to monthly donations.
Anderson says, “We like to use the analogy of a bar to explain this. It’s cheaper and more convenient to drink in your apartment, but a bar is specifically designed to facilitate drinking and hanging out in a comfortable atmosphere. A tip jar on a webcomic for example, can be ineffective because the site is ultimately designed to get the user to read the webcomic, not give money, so that’s what visitors will do even if they generally agree with supporting the artist.”
The team of three, Todd Anderson, Henry Moskowitz and Pete Berg, is based in Crown Heights. The site has been entirely bootstrapped so far.
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