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A new venture launched today, The Curators, is set to bring a wide range of select works from iconic film and photographic artists to the world of corporate banking to support a new generation of business development activities.

The Curators, Sharon Price and Peter Dench
The Curators, Sharon Price and Peter Dench

Co-founded by Directors Sharon Price and Peter Dench, the service is the first of its kind to bridge the gap between the film and photographic arts and corporate finance, working in consultation with clients to source never seen before, topical, of the moment or challenging works for client receptions, business development seminars, premières, service launches and functions.

They are also the first to offer ‘pre-curation’, helping artists from across the globe to build their exhibition portfolios and to present previously unseen works in corporate spaces.

Price and Dench have a strong track record not only in sourcing signature art works for private clients, but also in creating long-term value from events and business development programmes for corporate clientele. They advise on the selection and placement of works to any given brief and devise events that deliver on a range of cultural, CSR and commercial outcomes.

As the threat of challenger banks grows and with increasingly burdensome regulation and legacy systems to contend with, traditional players are continually seeking new and innovative ways to build and cement client relationships and build trust and integrity in the sector.

From the lobby of an international private finance headquarters in Geneva to a suite of board and meeting rooms in a law firm’s new office in Doha, The Curators are equally at home recommending artwork to create a specific ambience or providing a culturally-aware, large-scale exhibition as the backdrop for a crucial debate, to attract new clients or to engage with employees and internal teams.

The pair started their working life together as co-creative directors when they established a thriving UK arts venue, formulating a packed programme of sell-out visual arts events with names such as Tom Stoddart, Harry Borden, Chris Floyd and Laura Pannack.

Now The Curators, they are building on their well-established and diverse network of sought-after creatives to promote film and photography, not only in its aesthetic sense, but as a business building and relationship development service for corporate and private clients in prestige destinations across the globe.

Sharon said, “The UK is a global arts entrepôt and net exporter, with the second largest global market, yet we know that status and the wealth of acknowledged talent here isn’t used enough to drive non-arts based businesses. Art can lend a complex business more depth and personality. There are hundreds of companies that already see the visual arts not just as a decorative necessity, but also an opportunity to stimulate the thoughts of their employees, to develop new and establish existing relationships and support artists through purchases of their work and, perhaps most importantly, to project their desired image to clients, staff and visitors. But we’re only scratching the surface. We want to make hundreds, thousands. There’s no excuse for tired art on boardroom walls or in client facing areas anymore – particularly with the care and attention paid to creating a professional welcome with designer floral displays in immaculate reception areas and client lobbies – and with the impeccable five star catering and function suites many professional services firms invest in.

Peter adds, “Why film and photography? The film and photographic mediums offer a reality that carries the impact of the moment, or the story that is told, rather than imagined. This combined with the human understanding and sensitivity that is required for the photographer to make the picture honest, visually striking and to then resonate creates the ‘beauty’. The story behind taking the photograph and the reputation of the photographer have all become important factors in appreciating and understanding great art.”

The Curators will be calling on financial and professional services companies to consider the arts as a means to solve some of their most pressing issues, outside of the traditional notion that firms simply exist to turn a profit. Exhibitions can be designed to attract clients from outside of an organisation’s usual associations and give reasons to invite clients to talk on current topics. The Curators can also advise those companies that want to be visible when supporting worthy causes within a socially responsible and ethical framework.