Democratizing modern art

Democratizing modern art

Villa

Concept development
Brand strategy
Brand identity
Retail design
Digital design

Villa is a pop-up art store concept, co-created by Kurppa Hosk, gallery owner Jonas Kleerup and architects Boys Don’t Cry. The idea behind the concept is to make contemporary art accessible to more people. By being moved out into retail environments and sold at affordable prices, art can reach new audiences – not typically those frequenting art galleries. Kurppa Hosk co-owns the initiative with Jonas Kleerup and is behind the concept itself, the retail design and Villa’s graphic identity.

Challenge

The idea behind Villa was born in 2010. Swedish gallerist Jonas Kleerup had observed a gap in the market between mass-produced posters and expensive art from established galleries. “Ordinary people”, who don’t usually visit art exhibits or feel at home at auctions – but still appreciate photography, modern art and design – had seemingly nowhere to go. Jonas Kleerup teamed up with Kurppa Hosk and the architect firm Boys Don’t Cry with the ambition to fill that gap.

Approach

The solution was a pop-up art store concept, touring the streets of Stockholm. The idea was to offer contemporary art, from well-established artists as well as rising stars, and sell it at affordable prices. By being moved out into shopping environments – right next door to fashion stores – art could reach new audiences. Why should art be more difficult to buy than a pair of jeans? Art should be for everyone – not only a selected few. In that democratic spirit, the retail design and the visual identity for Villa were created. Kurppa Hosk and Boys Don’t Cry designed a relaxed environment, in sharp contrast to the typical white-box galleries and with a clear and simple pop-up nature.

Outcome

Villa’s first pop-up store opened in 2010 on one of the main shopping streets of downtown Stockholm. It was a huge success. Villa was awarded several prizes for Innovative art and shopping and also for design. Since then, Villa has continued to pop up once a year at different locations in Stockholm. Villa has also participated in several art fairs and collaborated with restaurants, fashion stores and other art galleries around the world. Kurppa Hosk helped develop a digital shop for Villa, making its art even more accessible. Welcome to pay a visit at vca.se.