Basq is revolutionizing the virtual art experience through in depth storytelling between artists and art lovers.
Tell us more about Basq.
Basq’s innovative artistic experience is enabled by the asynchronous and synchronous sharing of information about the creation, inspiration, and studio of an artist alongside the impact felt by the patron. Continuing our mission to support artists holistically, it is possible to easily search and connect with artists based on a number of identity and artistic filters.
What inspired you to start Basq?
Basq was inspired by a visit to a gallery. Seeing the textures, learning of an artist’s work in context amongst other artists, and having conversations about the impact of the piece illustrates the depth of connection between art and humanity.
Why is this problem important?
Directly opposing gallery viewing, online art is flat. The dynamism that accompanies art in a gallery, that which reminds of what it means to be human, is missing. This injustice persists even as direct-to-consumer art sales on social media continue to increase and provide a sustainable living for artists.
Who is your target market?
Serving a two sided marketplace, Basq has two beachhead markets. Those of up and coming artists and young professionals. We want to reach artists who are not gallery represented and looking to garner exposure to support their craft and develop a living out of their passion. We believe that young professionals have both the technical knowhow and means to begin a journey into identifying and connecting with artists and art that resonates with them.
How is B-Lab helping your venture develop?
B-Lab has been an incredible forum for mentorship, collaboration, and idea validation. Through my time in the accelerator I have conducted numerous user interviews with a wide range of artists and consumers, gotten invaluable insight into the market I am targeting, received feedback on my execution strategy, and morale boosts by being a part of a exceptional cohort.
What is something surprising that has happened thus far?
I stumbled upon an interview with a pioneer in virtual reality and mixed media art which provided great insight into what’s to come for Basq!
What’s the best piece of artwork you’ve purchased, and how did you find it?
I don’t have it yet, but I’m really hoping to purchase a lumen sculpture by Hebru Brantley one day. I love his work on young black figures and they remind me of the sense of wonder and exploration I had as a kid and try to maintain every day as I make Basq a reality!
Anything else you’d like to share?
I would love for any artists to contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org and for everyone to sign up for our newsletter here: http://eepurl.com/hEqH_z which will serve as our mvp until we can launch our app offering.
Brantley Leaphart is the founder of Basq. Brantley graduated from Brown University in May of 2021 with degrees in Computer Science and Theater and Performance Studies. He is currently a software engineer at Microsoft and has been a finalist in multiple startup competitions.