Artlink provided 150 pieces of artwork for the Seabourn Encore, and is busy tracking down more pieces for the Ovation, Holland America’s Nieuw Statendam and the 2019 newbuild for Costa that will sail in Europe.
“One of the objectives when developing an art collection for a ship – any ship – is to capture the spirit of the design of the ship and the spirit of its future sailings around the world,” said Tal Danai, CEO of Artlink.
For the Seabourn Encore, Danai started the job about three years before delivery – with an eye to compete with shoreside cultural attractions guests would be viewing during port stops.
“When they go back to the ship we cannot afford having the collection we have designed for the ship fade on them because they have seen amazing art on shore,” Danai said. The idea: having the art aboard inspire guests further from what they have seen shoreside.
Danai works closely with the ship’s lead interior designers, along with the brand. In the Encore’s case, the art collection echoes craftsmanship.
“It’s wide in its selection to encompass as many cultures as we could, but it has a thread that goes through it which is craftsmanship.”
When the Seabourn Ovation follows in spring 2018, the art collection will go a step further and embrace the concept of expedition travel, Danai advised.
The process starts out with a conceptual phase to come up with the art concept for the vessel.
Artlink then looks for the right pieces, using a network of hubs that comprises thousands upon thousands of artists. A project budget is set and pieces are acquired and owned by the cruise operator.
A big part of the project is figuring out where the art will go – including considering “creating the best Instagram moments aboard,” according to Danai.
“I think one of the most important things today is cultural design,” he continued. “There is going to be a lot more of it, and ships will become much more fine-tuned to specific cultural elements.”