Start-ups made in Austria: Artivive

Connecting Art with Agumented Reality – that is the idea behind Artivive. Founded in 2017, the startup creates new media art and has grown rapidly ever since. Founder Codin Popescu invites us to learn more about this innovative approach in this month´s interview.

Our December startup: Artivive 

What does Artivive do?

Artivive is an augmented reality (AR) tool for creating new media art. Artivive consists of the Artivive app, our free visualization component and Bridge by Artivive, the creational tool for artists.  With our tool, artists can create art in AR by easily link digital content to a physical artwork without any technical knowledge. Artists or any art institution can take visitors on a journey in time and explain what lies behind, enhance the art with illustrations or show how the artwork was made. We see AR art as a new art form and Artivive spearheads this development by integrating the different stakeholders (artists, creatives, museums, municipalities and universities) into one ecosystem.


Who is behind the startup?

Artivive was founded by Sergiu Ardelean and myself 2017 in Vienna. The core management team consists of one AR creative, one financial expert and one AR tech enthusiast. Our team in Vienna consists of 9 colleagues that focus on growth and development. We have institutionalized corporations in multiple countries such as USA, China, Israel, Thailand and Korea.


Who are your customers?

Artivive is a tool for all those who are engaged in art. We have several integration options. This can be an artist working with augmented reality or a student who is studying at an art school. And of course, we work with art institutions. For museums, galleries, art fairs and other institutions, Artivive offers a new and innovative way for the audience to interact with the exhibits.


What is your business model?

We have a subscription-based model for artists and creatives worldwide and a project-based model for B2B counterparts. I can definitely say that augmented reality art is gaining momentum. We are now focusing on offering different solutions for artists and art institutions. For artists, our tool can also be a way to generate a new revenue stream: for example, one artist sold an AR artwork and contractually obliged himself to supply the buyer with a new digital layer every six months for four years. The buyer receives new content – the story is altered and continued. The artist sold the buyer a digital art subscription model along with the physical artwork. AR opens up great opportunities for museums too: they can now have two exhibitions at the same time and place: one in physical space and another one with digital reinterpretations of the same artworks in augmented reality. Our different account types can be found on our website:


How was the idea born?

Artivive was born out of the idea to digitally revolutionizing the art market and changing the way art is experienced. Our aim was giving artists, museums and galleries the opportunity to add a narrative component to works of art and for viewers to have a more interactive experience with the artwork.


You were founded in 2017. What were your challenges back then and what are your challenges now?

Today, our biggest challenge is our fast growing community with currently 17.000 users creating art in augmented reality. Augmented reality is still a quite new thing in the art world. A lot of people want to try out but have questions about how to use it best. We want to offer them the best support possible, this is why we recently expanded our community management team. By the way, creating art in AR with our tool is easier than you might think! Everyone with a smartphone camera can do it. In addition, we get requests for new collaborations from around the world on a daily basis which makes us prioritize our workforce.


How did you grow? / How did your startup evolved?

I think the numbers can speak for themselves: within 2.5 years we were able to achieve a community of  17.000 users from 75 countries, 250 international exhibitions, 7 international museums, and 4 art and design fairs. More than 15.000 artworks were created by our community.


What are you working on now?

We are improving our application and starting to cooperate with new partners around the world while working on new projects and collaborations. Follow us on our social media channels @artiviveapp to get the latest news and updates.


How does the future look for you? What are your goals?

Artivive is looking forward to an exciting 2019 and wants to continue to establish augmented reality in the art world. It will keep building a constant dialog with our users in order to gradually extend and adapt the features of our tool to their specific needs.


Any piece of advice you can give to anyone who is thinking about starting his business?

I would advise everyone to think out of the box, get together a hard-working team, don’t be afraid to take calculated risks and to understand for whom you make your product and what you want to convey with it. Execution is key.


What is important to know about doing business in Austria?  

I believe that nowadays it is very important for companies to bring value and think outside geographical borders. When envisioning a global company one must find colleagues with different mindsets and cultural background. Austria is a good starting point but it is still a small country in a very big world.


Written by Olga Bratsun