Meet Josh Campbell
Chief Operating Officer
MA Art Business, New York, 2016
What is Canvas? What does your role with the company entail?
The Canvas app uses art recognition technology (patent pending) to identify artwork in the pictures people take. Simply put, it's like Shazam for art. When visitors in museums, galleries and art fairs take a photo of a painting with Canvas, the artwork is instantly recognized with information about the piece, the artist, and much more. Canvas encourages art fans to post their pictures and share art on other social networks. The app ensures proper credit goes to the artists and venues via tagging, which provides increased exposure when sharing. It’s an innovative and highly social way for artists, galleries, museums, art fans, and collectors to share, discover, and experience artwork. There is no other platform that engages and connects an audience both in person and on mobile phones to the entire art world. I am the outreach arm of the enterprise. My job is to get content for the app and establish mutually beneficial partnerships between Canvas and outside parties.
Update: Canvas was acquired by the VR firm, Eazel. Josh is now the firm's Director of Strategic Partnerships.
What is the most rewarding aspect of your job?
I get to see art and work with artists and art venues every day!
What are your future career aspirations?
I would love to continue to facilitate mutually beneficial partnerships between actors in the art world, its sister industries of film, music, theater and comedy, as well as the tech and finance industries, in order to promote a global arts education initiative.
Where did your passion for art begin?
My grandparents were collectors. I grew up around art. I have also been enamored with photography since an early age, a passion that led me to get a studio art and art history degree.
What is the most unique (weird, wondrous, or exhilarating) moment you’ve experienced in the art world?
My first trip to Miami Basel with SIA. I had never been to an art fair that size before and was completely blown away. Experiencing it all for the first time, from the fair previews to the art walks in Wynwood, is something I will never forget. It is also what cemented my decision to pursue a career in the art industry.
What’s your favorite work of art?
It is hard to peg down one favorite artwork, as there are so many. I am a huge fan of Piet Mondrian, especially his works after 1920. Inspired by the views from the top of the Eiffel Tower (the first time in history where every day people were able to experience a city view at that height), Mondrian began to create compositions based on the grid of the city's layout. These revolutionary and abstract works would eventually mature to the point where Mondrian's artistic vocabulary was reduced to simple geometric elements and primary colors.
Tell us an interesting fact about yourself.
I am an avid runner and tennis player. You can usually find me running around with my dog every morning in Central Park. Before 9:00 am, there are no leash laws in the park, so the dogs can run free. For any dog lover, it is the best way to start your day in NYC.