Investing in Art with a New Perspective: An Interview with Natascha Reihl of Artemundi

Investing in Art with a New Perspective: An Interview with Natascha Reihl of Artemundi

The art market has long been perceived as an enigmatic realm, traditionally navigated by wealthy collectors and dealers. But Artemundi aims to break those barriers and make art a bona fide asset class. With over three decades in the art investment sector, the company presents a seasoned approach to investing in artworks. We sat down with Natascha Reihl, Head of Business Development and Private Sales to delve into the mechanics and philosophy that underpin Artemundi's business model, and to understand how it distinguishes itself in the rapidly growing space of art investments.

Seasoned Expertise in a Rising Sector

When asked what differentiates Artemundi from newer entrants in the art investment space, Reihl was clear: "It's our deep-rooted expertise in both the art market and the investment sector that sets us apart. We offer a range of investment vehicles tailored to diverse investor profiles, from art funds to fractional ownership. This is in contrast to many of our competitors, who may offer expertise in either the art market or the investment sector, but not both."

A Holistic Approach to Risk Mitigation

Artemundi prides itself on employing a rigorous protocol to minimize risk. "We work exclusively with dead, consolidated artists," says Reihl. "Young, top-selling artists might not necessarily be a safe investment; they are often products constructed and promoted by galleries rather than embodiments of artistic production or historical significance. Our approach to selecting artists and artworks for investment makes us unique in this sector."

Fractional Ownership vs. Art Funds

For those weighing the pros and cons between art funds and fractional ownership, Reihl advises that the decision depends on various factors such as financial commitment, flexibility, and level of control. "Fractional ownership is excellent for those who want to actively choose the artworks they invest in," she says. "In contrast, art funds are generally a higher investment commitment, and the artworks are chosen by the fund’s manager."

Pioneering Art Tokenization

Artemundi has also ventured into the world of blockchain by pioneering art tokenization. In 2021, the company tokenized Picasso’s "Fillette au béret" painting, marking a historic moment in both the art and investment sectors. "Tokenization is a significant part of our future strategy, making art investment more transparent, fast, and accessible," notes Reihl.

Passion and Investment: Two Sides of the Same Coin

While art may be a matter of personal taste and passion, Reihl suggests that "passion does not have to be an alternative strategy; it can be part of the investment strategy." Understanding the art market and having knowledge about a specific artist's market is essential for successful investing in art.

Resilience in Times of Crisis

Reflecting on the current state of the art market, Reihl observes that it has remained resilient even in times of crisis. "While the art market is starting to cool down, some artists and their best artworks continue to thrive and yield favorable returns," she says.

The Role of Digitization

As for the role of digitization, Artemundi has embraced it wholeheartedly. "Digitization enhances existing services and provides new art investment opportunities," Reihl states. However, the company is also cautious about the risks that come with it, such as hacking or the loss of individual access passwords, which is why they work with specialists in blockchain-based platforms and products.

Transparency Through Blockchain

Blockchain technology, Reihl believes, is revolutionizing the traditional art market dynamics by providing transparency and accessibility. "We collaborate with companies that specialize in blockchain to ensure that all parts of the investment process are covered by experts," she explains. "This is one of our commitments to compliance and transparency."

Securitization of Art

Artemundi has been a front-runner in art securitization. Art Security Tokens (ASTs) allow investors to own and trade fractional ownership in a transparent marketplace. "The artworks we select have perpetual market value and pass our rigorous evaluation procedures to mitigate risks," concludes Reihl.

Artemundi’s distinctive approach and its long-standing experience place it in a league of its own. As the art investment space continues to evolve, the company stands as a beacon, illuminating the intricate maze of art and finance for a broader range of investors.