I had a chance to interview Emily Vu, a freshmen majoring in Physics. She is an intern here at the ANTrepreneur Center. Most freshmen are still trying to figure what to do with their life or just adapting to their college environment. But Emily, along with her team, is creating an online platform that helps underground artists sell their artwork for affordable prices.
I asked her about her goals for the new platform. She said, “my ultimate goal for ARTEM is to host pop-up art galleries around the world that showcase their art in person.” She also added that she was inspired by artists in her community that she believes should be recognized.
On January 19, ARTEM took a step towards realizing that vision. With nearly 50 attendees, the group held an party that featured an open art gallery, an open mic, free food, and more! The party was a collaboration with AntArters and Word of Mouth. The main reason for the party was to recognize the art community at UCI. There was a lot of focus on the students, rather than ARTEM itself.
Emily originally thought of the idea of ARTEM when she was shopping online for clothes on the app Depop. She realized there should be a similar concept of allowing users to select fashion, but for art. Emily said, “I want to spread the message that art is something anyone can pursue, and that buying art shouldn’t have to be expensive.”
The ANTrepreneur Center had a huge part in helping Emily. It has provided her with endless resources. She said, “I am able to have one-on-one consultations to discuss all aspect of business. I have learned about money management, team building, and marketing. Finally, the center allowed me to launch my party right here,” referring to the resource’s office.
As with any ANTrepreneur, Emily and her two fellow co-founders also experienced challenges. I asked her how she over came them.
Emily replied,” As a student, I didn’t have money to hire web developers so I had to utilize the resources around me.” She had a strict constraint on how much she could invest into her company. Despite her needs as a student, “my team and I are constantly communicating with each other, whether it be over text, Facebook Messenger, or having meetings due to their busy schedules.”
“We always try to set deadlines so we have something to work towards for our project.” With this platform, Emily hopes that young and upcoming artists will seize the chance to showcase their talent while forming a community to support each other.