One very important energy-thought to keep burning in our heads is just to always remember, no matter where you are or who you are, there are people in the world right now that you do not know about and would have a lot of trouble finding. But you need them. And so does the world.
— from the Tom Blodgett archives, ca.1990
We are art detectives.
Our passion is in making discoveries that matter.
No hype, no fluff.
redM is the only organization in the art world whose artists are identified, vetted, and elected by an Art Advisory Board, composed of a dozen distinguished art historians, art critics, former museum directors and curators, gallerists and auctioneers. Members of the board offer their frank and expert opinions on the quality of an artist’s work and its significance within the major movements of the 20th century. We present exhibitions that are innovative and visually compelling — reinforced by equally compelling back-stories. They also offer a significant value proposition for collectors.
Some of our artists are pure discoveries — artists who worked in isolation and therefore remained virtually unknown. Some of our artists are rediscoveries — artists who were lauded during their lifetimes but became de-railed for fascinating reasons. These two categories fall within our division, redM Estate Collections. As for our living artists, they are part of our redM Contemporary division. Here are mid and late career artists who have typically achieved serious critical recognition but never enjoyed an effective platform to capture the concerted attention of the art world. Some pursued careers parallel with the art world but in leading their “double lives” either lacked the time or motivation to expose their works to serious collectors. Still others avoided seeking recognition in the first place.
Elected artists are presented through exhibitions on our website, through art fairs, at our gallery, and through sharing with our affiliate galleries around the country. We also secure need-based funding solutions for the collections we represent because they require a range of necessities such as archival storage, documentation, conservation, and the critical biographies commissioned from our network of scholars and experts.
Our redM logo, which was created in 2011, is an acronym for “Rediscovered Masters.” It acknowledges our beginnings in 1975 when founder Peter Hastings Falk began to focus on this niche in art research and earn his reputation as a publisher and independent curator of rediscovery exhibitions at museums and galleries across the country. In 2015 we adopted the more formal company name — redM Institute — to reflect our unique position in the art market. Specifically, in fulfilling our mission we merge key attributes of both art museums and galleries. As scholars, we have been proud to contribute what have been recognized as important chapters in American art history. And as a happy consequence, our satisfaction has also come from being a catalyst that connects compelling new choices to serious collectors, art dealers, and museum curators.
Our consistent mode — as we exhibit at the major art fairs, our affiliate galleries across the country, our website, and our own gallery headquarters in New York — is that we are educators. Our convergence of scholarship and exposure to the art market has over the decades resulted in redM — an organization with a hybrid vigor that sets it apart from all other galleries. In short, we help everyone appreciate and acquire discoveries that matter.
Our exhibition venues reach out to inform and alert museum curators, gallerists, collectors, historians, and critics of these artists' potentially extraordinary contributions to the history of art. As a veteran partner for artists and estates, we cherish holding these artists' reputations in trust — because it's a tragedy if the art world remained unaware of their works. Yet we must be very selective. Once a qualified artist is nominated by a member of our Art Advisory Board, we vote. If an artist is accepted as a member, we become constantly proactive on their behalf, whereas most art websites are simply passive and reactive. Our promotional advocacy is effective because it is rooted in scholarship — not hype.
Tom Bodgett, the extraordinary figurative surrealist shown at the top of this page, often expressed the bitterness and resignation that results when a highly imaginative and innovative artist is forced to come to terms with a lack of critical recognition, exposure, and appreciation. Another rediscovery example is Joan Thorne (above). The prominent art historian, Barbara Rose, cited Thorne as one of the most important women painters to emerge during the 1970s. Thorne was in two Whitney Biennials, won the coveted Prix de Rome, and had a solo at the Corcoran Gallery. Despite her success, a number of valid reasons conspired to cause her to gradually fade from the scene — among them a significant length of time living abroad. After meeting with her in her New York studio we secured for her a rediscovery exhibition in 2010 at Sideshow, the highly respected pioneer gallery in Williamsburg, Brooklyn. That show received positive reviews in both the New York Times and Art in America. As a result, we have opened the doors to other galleries throughout the country and have continued to pursue exhibition opportunities.
And what about those artists who were never in the limelight to begin with, but who left large and compelling collections? The remarkable story of Arthur Pinajian [1914-1999] is not about rediscovery but about a completely new discovery. Here was an abstract painter, and hermit, who lived amid the Woodstock (New York) art colony but never exhibited. The great contemporary historian of American art, William Innes Homer, first reviewed the collection, which had been destined for the Dumpster. Together, we assembled a group of essayists to produce the monograph. Publication was launched concurrently with an exhibition that traveled to museums in Woodstock, Boston, and Los Angeles in 2010–2011. Ever since 2012, when we began curating exhibitions for galleries from California to New York, sales have been extraordinary. ABC's "Good Morning America" news show called it "The unlikely discovery that has rocked the art world!"
Focusing where it matters
Many thousands of websites display fine art. There are even hundreds of group sites, all of which are passive displays. But redM is the only site focusing on late career artists and artist estate collections — and the only one that is proactively promoting its members.
Our Mission is to connect artists with museum curators and gallerists who have the strongest affinities with their particular approach to art — their concept and style. In order to effectively make such specific connections, we have carefully identified the missions and affinities of thousands of curators and gallerists worldwide.
But how do the artists grab their attention?
Through our curated exhibitions. We put ourselves in the shoes of a museum curator. We make careful curatorial decisions to create one or more thematic exhibitions for each artist. Further, we write essays that are both biographical and critical in nature. Together, these make compelling presentations. Without hype. Without fluff. So, when we alert these curators and gallerists, they are eager to take a long and serious look.
redM is not one of the thousands of websites that are basically static advertising platforms for a wide range of artists whose works are of even wider-ranging quality. Rather, representation on our site is by invitation only. That’s because we understand the seriousness with which curators, dealers, and collectors approach their missions. And these are the people who will matter most to artists.
The Curators’ Mission is to apply their professional insights to develop and illuminate the strengths of their museums’ collections. After all, the soul of every museum is its permanent collection. So, these curators are keen to add new works that are pertinent. Acquisition funds can come from “angels,” those benefactors who make significant donations to the museum, or from deaccessioning unwanted works that have remained in storage for many years. The primary aim of this development process is the creation of best-in-class thematic exhibitions that attract an enthusiastic public. It’s the obligation of every museum.
redM has identifed the special interests of every museum curator. And, when an exhibition is being planned, we learn about it years in advance. As a result, whenever our system matches works as an appropriate fit, we automatically alert the curator about the pertinent artists.
The Gallerists’ Mission is very similar to that of a museum curator, except that their goal is to sell art to private collectors and museums. Gallerists are keen to better understand the sensibilities of their clientele and establish long-term relationships with them. The problem for artist estates and even distinguished late career artists is that connecting with the most appropriate — and most effective — gallerists is very difficult. Most galleries have a fixed number of artists in their “stable,” and it’s tough to break in. Just as with museum curators, we have identified their special interests and have developed a network of affliliate galleries across the country. Whenever we see a particular body of work as being a proper fit, we automatically alert our affiliate gallerists.
Collectors typically have a very personal approach to living with art. The most serious of them are passionate about building their collections. They follow museum exhibitions and are often closely advised by trusted gallerists. redM reinforces those relationships by encouraging our collector-viewers to visit all of our venues: our website, our New York gallery, our shows at the major art fairs, and through our network of affinity galleries around the country. When we bring the most pertinent artists to the attention of collectors, it’s not through interruption but through permission. That’s because they have told us that they want to be alerted.
Please go to the Q&A section for answers to other questions.
If you do not see your answer, please contact us.