Nine Minutes with The Cult House Founder J A Neto

This year sees the return of The Cult House’s It’s Art Call Competition, an amazing opportunity for early/mid career artists to have their work seen by new audiences and be appraised by experienced voices in the industry.

After Nyne met The Cult House founder J A Neto to find out more about the prize, and what inspired him to set up The Cult House in the first place.

Tell us about the origins of The Cult House

I created The Cult House because I’ve recognised the massive interest and potential of public art events. Pretty much everything happens here. I found myself as part of an audience and not playing a decisive role in any of the art fairs and events platforms,  I decided to create one that suits myself and serves all kinds of audiences – one that exists without the need to be part of an existing art collective/communities and one that is fully accessible to the public as a whole. That is what The Cult House is progressively creating.

What is unique about The Cult House compared to other arts platforms?

We do not pick the artists based on what we can take from them or their style or art fields. The collective is designed to help celebrate and spread art to a wider audience. We want artists willing to join our group to grow with us. Our criteria are very simple – if you are serious with what you are doing and working hard towards that, you can join us. We will help as much as we can, particularly if it is beneficial to promote what you’re doing for the whole collective.

We have different projects for different levels of artists. You can check some of them on our website past events tab, where our artists are encouraged to participate and at the same time to build their own network. This is proving to be a fantastic formula. Immediately after our events we can see on our social media channels the interaction between the artists and the results of what they learn from each other. It’s very rewarding and gives us a solid base to keep going and develop more and better events.

How does your experience in the art world equip you in working on the Cult House projects?

My first background is from events therefore not being part of the artwork system has allowed me to  learn and to grow together with The Cult House. At the moment we can provide the artists with social media skills, marketing strategies, consultancy, career advises, curation and everything related to their needs collectively or individually.

This is the third edition of the It’s Art Call competition; what are you looking for in participating artists? What qualities are you looking for?

Since the first edition we are always looking for a range of artists who somehow stand out on their fields by their creativity, techniques and passion for what they do allowing us to enhance those qualities with the project in a long term.

Those qualities vary from their capacity to show what they are able to do,  their potential and truly passion during all the selection process.

What is different about this year’s edition of the prize?

This year we are very proud to partner/collaborate with the new After Nyne Gallery which as you know is part of the same parent company as After Nyne Magazine and After Nyne Consulting & Publishing. This collaboration will help us to enhance the level of our competition enhancing even more the prizes for the selected artists.

We are very happy to be part of this new venue and enterprise.

Who is involved in the judging of the prize?

On this 3rd Edition we have a fantastic range of Arts professionals on the judges panel which make sure we can find the right artists for both collective and the solo winning artist.

I’m on the panel along with Claire Meadows, director of After Nyne Gallery & founder of After Nyne Magazine, Yukie Yokohama, Director of Zealous Co, Oliver Norris, founder of Talented Art Fair, New Artist Fair & Lemon Art, and Tabish Khan, arts writer for Londonist and FAD Magazine.

Also joining us are  Holly Howe, Editor of Avenir Magazine/Art Critic, Mara Alves, an independent Curator/Adviser & Mentor, Elen Salina, Freelance Curator along with last year’s solo winner Ian Rayer-Smith and two invited artists: Syrett and Lauren Baker.

What do the winners stand to gain?

They can see some of the benefits from the past editions of the events at:

But also:

–          They will reach an audience of over 130.000 art lovers, collectors, buyers between us and our partners. Nationally and Internationally.

–          Having our expertise, support for at least 6 months after the exhibition.

–          Private View with a selected guest list.

–          Digital Catalogue and a Limited Printed Edition version for the first time on this edition.

–          The solo winner artists also will have an Article on our TCH Periodic & at After Nyne Magazine January Edition and a special Q&A event.

What are your best memories from the previous two editions of the prize?

There are so many, but one that always comes to my mind it is when the artists arrive to the exhibition and see the show up to start. The feeling of proud and joy on their eyes is something that makes all the hard work worth it.

If you had one piece of advice to give participating artists about their careers in the arts what would it be?

Be honest with yourself and always search for the best result.

Where can people find out more information about the open call, and what’s the closing date?

You can find out more at the link below – deadline is September 10th


IMAGE: The work of Ian Rayer-Smith, winner of It’s Art Call 2017 on show at D Contemporary.