“The older I get, the less I see people collecting art for their homes, and the more they collect art on their internet-connected machines instead”
Dave Vescio’s journey is nothing short of extraordinary. From being a professional soldier to a drug dealer, and then an ex-con, he eventually transformed into a prominent Hollywood Movie Star. However, his evolution didn’t stop there; he further ventured into becoming an Award-Winning Contemporary Artist, pioneering his own unique art style that is unlike anything you’ve ever seen before. Throughout his life, he has confronted darkness and death, but ultimately embraced the light and the essence of life itself. Despite attaining fame and success, Dave remains refreshingly down-to-earth and approachable. Engaging in a discussion with him about the profound aspects of life and art becomes an enlightening experience. Today, we bring you Part 4 of our Exclusive Interview with the one and only, Dave Vescio.
Before delving into this fascinating interview be sure to read:
What is the most expensive artwork you ever sold?
Now, I’ve only been selling my artworks for the past two years, but since June ‘21, I have sold 102 wall art pieces off my artist website, which is about $22,000 in total art sales. Not bad for my first two years of selling fine-art photography. The highest priced limited-edition artwork that I have sold so far is $679. I just sold two of those this past week to the same collector.
How much do your fine-art photographs cost on average?
My limited editions range from $299 to $679, and my open editions (which are my gift shop items) range from $69 to $99.
How and where do you sell your art, and with how many clients do you work with on a regular basis?
As of now, I currently sell all my art off my artist website, and the 102 wall art pieces that I sold are owned by 65 private collectors who either live in North America, Europe, Asia, or Australia. I found them all on Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram.
Who buys your artworks, what countries do most of your clients come from, and what is their average age?
Out of my 65 collectors, 23% of them are international clientele. The rest live in the United States, mostly on the East Coast. As for their age, I honestly don’t know because, as of now, I sell everything off my artist website, and we communicate with each other either through DMs or email messages. But one day I would love to meet all my collectors in person. I totally look forward to that!
What do you think of NFTs, and do you have any plans on going digital?
I think NFTs are great for digital artists. They always had a hard time selling their art, and now they have the potential to do that because of NFTs.
“Humans just love the latest inventions”
As for myself, I’m just not a fan of any kind of art that needs a machine to run it. Out of all the art created throughout the centuries that needed a machine or a mechanical device to make it work, how many of those do we still see to this day? Very, very few. Why? Because we humans just love the latest inventions and the latest mediums of mechanical art of our current time, and we also love the current artists who are creating with these new types of machines too. Sooner or later, we’ll forget about the mechanical art or machine art of these past decades because we always want brand new, shiny, and improved things instead.
Example: Ask Gen Zers, how many of them watch silent films from 100 years ago? Do they even know who Charlie Chaplin was? How many of them even listen to the music made in the 1930s? Do they even know who Louis Armstrong or Robert Johnson were? Have they ever listened to any of their songs? Art that plays on a machine gets forgotten way quicker than art that doesn’t need a machine or a mechanical device to play it, and it’s been this way since the beginning of machines/mechanical devices were first invented.
What do you think are the biggest mistakes that artists make today?
Not creating the art that they want to create and not allowing it to be seen by others. But at the same time, they may be hobbyists in the end, and there’s nothing wrong with that. I honestly wish more human beings had hobbies in their life. This world would be a way better and a more creative place because of it. But I also know that these black mirrors (TV sets, laptops, and smartphones) are getting in the way of all that as well. Because these machines are currently made to entertain you, versus when they were first made, they were meant for you to create on instead. But that’s capitalism and advertising for you. If I can steal your time, then you won’t have the time to do what you truly want to do instead. And everyone is trying to steal our time with these black mirrors, and I mean everyone.
“Everyone is trying to steal our time”
What is your opinion of the modern art market right now, and where is it going to be in 10 years?
That’s a difficult question to answer because of all the constant changes that are currently happening on the internet these days. Nowadays, you can create your own artist website and sell all your art from there. Also, there’s now NFTs and generative AI art that is radically changing the art industry as well. So, I believe the modern art market is going through a major transition right now, just like how Hollywood did when Netflix and YouTube forced everyone to go streaming instead, and that’s when movie theaters and cable TV stations started to collapse on themselves. And let’s not forget how TikTok videos & Instagram Reels have killed the Hollywood business model as well with the younger audiences. So, I see the same exact thing happening to the modern art market as well.
Art galleries have been shutting down across the world because of the COVID lockdowns, and you can literally buy art online now. You can also use augmented reality to see how an artwork looks on your walls before you even purchase it. I have that on my artist website as well! Plus, you can show your artworks through Facetime or Zoom to a potential collector, and they can see what it looks like while you’re holding it in your hands. That’s the magic of black mirrors, and that’s the future of all art sales in the coming decades. Plus, anyone can create their own artworks by using generative AI, and if they knew how to print them (there are companies slowly advertising on how to do that exactly), then they could literally create their art pieces for their homes. That will literally kill most artists’ careers in an instant.
“That will literally kill most artists’ careers in an instant”
Also, corporations and small businesses have already started to do that for advertising and commercial purposes. They’re not hiring artists anymore; they’re doing it all by themselves these days with generative AI. Generative AI is going to kill so many creative jobs in the commercial/advertising space and in the mass production art print world as well. Plus, NFT art and digital art that is only meant to be seen on the internet are radically changing how people see art too. The older I get, the less I see people collecting art for their homes, and the more they collect art on their internet-connected machines instead. From artworks to music to books to film/TV, the younger generations just want everything on their phones or laptops instead. So, for the next ten years, who knows… Augmented reality (AR) and virtual reality (VR) may change everything once again as well.
Plus, the one major problem that I constantly see on social media is that these social media companies are slowly brainwashing everyone to make art and post art on these social media platforms for free, for the social media audiences to experience one’s art for free. While these social media companies are all making a killing off this behavior. Versus if you post your art on Amazon, Etsy, Fine Art America, Apple Music, etc. At least you get paid for it when someone purchases your art when they look at it or experience it because that platform was created to sell one’s art, not just experience it for free. So, that’s a major problem that I do see with social media. That these social media platforms are literally brainwashing the younger generations into thinking it’s all about how many followers you have and how many likes, shares, and comments you get. But that doesn’t pay the bills, and it never will. What will is when they buy the art off your website, off of a third-party website, or at a brick-and-mortar physical store/event instead.
Who are your favorite artists, and which of their artworks inspire you the most?
My favorite artists are the abstract artists of the past, from the ancient cave painters to the ones who created the hieroglyphs and the petroglyphs. They were the original creators of abstract art, so, I’m always going out into the mountains and the deserts of the American Southwest to find these ancient petroglyphs that were created 1,000 to 10,000 years ago. They all taught me so, so much. But I also love the Modern Abstract artists who reinvented abstract art into something else, such as Hilma af Klint, Wassily Kandinsky, Pablo Picasso, Marcel Duchamp, and Jean-Michel Basquiat. These artists literally helped push abstract art into new frontiers, and one day, I would love to do the same exact thing as well. As for their artworks, there isn’t just one; it’s their combination of artworks that got me to see art in a totally different light. They literally created a new art movement and took us all on this spiritual and intellectual journey into the human consciousness and beyond.
Are there any books that had a profound impact on you that you would like to recommend to our readers?
I highly recommend everyone to read: “The War of Art” by Steven Pressfield, “Mastery” by Robert Greene, “The Power of Myth” by Joseph Campbell, “The 50th Law” by 50 Cent and Robert Greene, “The Perennial Seller” by Ryan Holiday, and “Hit Makers” by Derek Thompson. All these books will teach anyone how to overcome their obstacles and make their dreams come true, and every single one of these writers had their own tough obstacle(s) to overcome, so, they are teaching practical knowledge versus just theory and ideas. Plus, all the above writers are the best of the best in their artistic field. They are true masters teaching us mere mortals how to become true masters too.
BONUS: If you were able to go back in time and tell your 18-year-old self anything – what would you say?
I would say, trust your instincts and be open to endless possibilities. The world is your oyster. But I pretty much knew that because I made my childhood dream come true at the age of 18 when I became a real-life G.I. Joe. I just never imagined that I would want to leave the military and that I would eventually become a professional artist in so many different artistic mediums. I never imagined that I would create art with the best of the best on the planet, from acting in films with nineteen actors who either won or got nominated for the Oscar, the Golden Globe, or an Emmy. And I never imagined that I would work for two years straight with the Blue-Chip contemporary artist named Paul McCarthy whose immersive video art projects took film art into a brand-new direction. I also never imagined that I would win sixteen awards from the Top 7 photography contests in the world that have an abstract or an Americana category, and I did this in my first two years of submitting to them. Plus, I have over 100 wall art pieces hanging in homes all around the world. So, let’s just see what is next for me in my last two to three decades of life. I’m totally looking forward to it!
“Trust your instincts and be open to endless possibilities”
The World Art News (WAN) is not liable for the content of this publication. All statements and views expressed herein are only an opinion. Act at your own risk. No part of this publication may be reproduced without written permission. © The World Art News