Yesterday, Amazon owner Jeff Bezos moved into the world of journalism with his purchase of The Washington Post for $250 million. Today, he is taking on the art world, as his web retail giant introduced Amazon Art, a platform for customers to buy original pieces from 150 dealers and 4,500 artists.
Amazon previously unsuccessfully tried to enter the art world by teaming with auction house Sotheby's back in 1999. Today, it must deal with young Internet competitors Artsy and Artnet. The biggest added value of the site is its navigability, as TechCrunch writes. "The benefit of the new storefront is that it consolidates and makes searchable a collection that was previously fractured and spread across a number of smaller storefronts."
The collection has some major names, including, as the image above shows in the left corner, Andy Warhol, Salvador Dali, and Marc Chagall. Amazon's most expensive piece belongs to Norman Rockwell, whose "Willie Gillis: Package from Home" (left, below) is listed at $4.85 million — and available with 1-click!
But Amazon Art also targets the regular Joes, as a section of its homepage focuses on affordable living room decor.
And with its consumer base of millions, Amazon has an inherent advantage on other web-based competitors. After all, Amazon has already changed the book world; now, it has its sights set on art, too.
This article is from the archive of our partner The Wire.