5 tips for the administration of artists' estates

When it comes to managing the estate or bequest of artists, family members and trusted individuals face a complex task. From artwork to contracts to personal documents, there are many aspects that need to be organized and preserved. Digitization offers modern solutions to keep track of everything, make the process more efficient and, of course, preserve the artistic heritage. In this article, we would like to share with you 5 valuable tips on how to use digital technology to streamline an artist's estate management.

Tip 1: Structured collection of all available information

A fundamental step in estate administration is to systematically record all available information about the artwork. Record not only work dimensions, technique, and dating, but also other relevant details such as location, whether the work is framed, and where it has already been exhibited. Use a digital inventory system (such as ARTBUTLER NEXT) to create and maintain a comprehensive inventory of works. Such systems also offer features such as uploading photos, descriptions and document storage. A structured record not only facilitates organization, but also provides a clear overview.

Tip 2: Digitizing and archiving documents

Another important step in estate administration is the digitization of all relevant documents. Contracts, invoices, certificates, personal notes - all these documents should be scanned or created digitally. For this, rely on high-resolution scanners or smartphone apps to obtain clear and legible copies. These digital documents can then be stored in a secure and well-structured file system. Cloud storage solutions, such as those offered in a digital inventory system, allow easy access from multiple devices and locations.

Tip 3: Categorization and keywording

Digitization not only makes it easier to archive documents, but also to efficiently organize and target specific information. Use unique categories and meaningful keywords to locate information quickly and easily. For example, you can quickly create lists of your artwork in a suitable inventory system (such as inventory or insurance lists) and then easily output them in the appropriate format. This approach can save you valuable time and allow you to focus on the actual creative legacy.

Tip 4: Continuous updating and maintenance

Conscientious estate management requires continuous maintenance and updating. Take time regularly to revise information in your inventory system if, for example, the location of an artwork changes, add new documents or images, and delete outdated data. This will ensure that your digital system is always up to date and that you don't lose valuable information.

Tip 5: Keeping artistic heritage alive

With a carefully maintained inventory system, you lay the foundation for preserving an artistic legacy. If you want to take the step into the public eye, you now have the opportunity to easily create an engaging online presence. Through a website or a virtual exhibition space (online showroom), you can offer insights into the biography, the artworks and their creative processes and thus increase the awareness and visibility of the estate. In this way, the artistic heritage remains alive and reaches many people. With a suitable database, you can easily make this information available on a website or virtual exhibition space.

Digitization has changed the way artists* estates can be organized and managed. By using digital tools such as inventory systems and document archiving, you not only keep track of everything, but also increase efficiency. The above advice will help you keep the creative legacy well organized and protected. When it comes to efficient art estate management, the cloud-based ARTBUTLER NEXT database can provide you with valuable support.

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Foto-Credits: Birmingham Museums Trust