When the David Zwirner gallery sold out its booth at May’s Frieze New York art fair within hours, its team didn’t sit idle—they opened ArtBinder and kept selling. This iPad and iPhone app, launched in 2011 by Alexandra Chemla, gives dealers an unprecedented tool for sharing inventory information, facilitating trades on the go. Fairs haven’t been the same since.
The idea came to Chemla while working at Gavin Brown’s Manhattan gallery. As part of her duties she would compile endless printouts of offerings to be lugged around and given to collectors. "It took forever," she recalls. Convinced there had to be a digital way, she consulted her peers. When no one had a solution, Chemla developed one herself.
ArtBinder synthesizes the details of a work—artist, title, date, price, etc.—and creates a dossier, with images, that can be readily presented or e-mailed. In just a few years the platform has been adopted by more than 300 leading galleries, including Pace and Hauser & Wirth. And it’s no longer simply a tool for insiders. Buoyed by $3.2 million in new venture capital, Chemla recently introduced a free app that lets galleries open their inventories to the general public. Ease and speed remain her goals. "Success is in hearing how many more sales dealers are closing," she says. And how much more sleep they’re getting. For more information go to artbinderom .