7 Questions for Peric Fang and Yi Gong, Founders of Pinto Gallery, an Online Gallery Focused on Making Meaningful IRL Connections

Early adopters of digital platforms, the dealers are building relationships with clued-in collectors looking to enter the online art market.

Installation view of "Flowers Bloom" (2022) at the L.A. Art Show. Courtesy of Pinto Gallery, Los Angeles.

Based entirely online, Peric Fang and Yi Gong founded Pinto Gallery in 2019—predating the rush to establish online gallery spaces the following year. Focusing largely on contemporary Asian art, with works by artists such as Ai Weiwei and Yoshitomo Nara, Pinto has set itself apart through its ongoing commitment to still engage with events and collectors in real life—despite being a digital platform. Fang and Gong operate Pint Gallery out of Los Angeles, California, partaking in local events like the L.A. Art Fair, and engaging with the greater arts community.

We recently spoke the Pinto Gallery founders to learn more about what led them to base the gallery online, and what they do to stay on top of current trends in light of the proliferation of digital platforms.

Left: Peric Fang, founder and director. Right: Yi Gong, co-founder and director. Courtesy of Pinto Gallery, Los Angeles.

Left: Peric Fang, founder and director. Right: Yi Gong, co-founder and director. Courtesy of Pinto Gallery, Los Angeles.

Can you talk about what led to the founding of Pinto Gallery? What inspired you to establish your own art gallery together?

Peric Fang: The idea for Pinto Gallery was sparked when I collected my first Takashi Murakami print from the Broad Museum in Los Angeles and noticed a significant purchase price difference between Japan and the United States. I started to wonder how collectors—especially during the pandemic when in-person visits to galleries were limited—could benefit with a more affordable and transparent online art buying experience. This inspired me to establish Pinto Gallery as an online gallery with a mission to represent Asian artworks in the art market, offering limited edition signed prints from renowned artists such as Takashi Murakami, MADSAKI, Aya Takano, etc. Our goal is to make art more accessible to collectors, especially young ones who conduct extensive research online when acquiring artworks.

Since 2020, the digital art world has exploded. How do you reach and engage with buyers and collectors online?

Peric Fang: As an online gallery, we at Pinto Gallery utilize a multifaceted approach to reach and engage with buyers and collectors online. This includes implementing an integrated digital marketing strategy, encompassing social media outreach, strategic partnerships with online art platforms, and maintaining a meticulously curated website. We also actively participate in prestigious offline events like the L.A. Art Show, providing immersive engagement opportunities and fostering meaningful connections with art enthusiasts. By leveraging various online channels and in-person events, we strive to create a dynamic and engaging online presence, facilitating interactions with our audiences, and promoting our collection to a wider art community.

Installation view of "Flowers Bloom" (2021) at the L.A. Art Show. Courtesy of Pinto Gallery, Los Angeles.

Installation view of “Flowers Bloom” (2022) at the L.A. Art Show. Courtesy of Pinto Gallery, Los Angeles.

Do you have any advice for either artists or collectors who are looking to enter the online art market?

Peric Fang: As an online gallery, we’ve got some valuable insights for artists and collectors looking to enter the online art market. For artists, it’s all about connecting with collectors on a deeper level by sharing the unique story, inspiration, creative process, and artistic journey behind their artworks. Having a well-designed website, active social media engagement, and partnering with reputable online art platforms can help. Providing rich and engaging content that goes beyond high-quality digital images is key. For collectors, doing research, practicing due diligence, and engaging with established online galleries and platforms is vital. Building trust, leveraging digital tools, and staying informed can benefit artists and collectors alike in the online art market.

What are some of the ways you keep abreast of new and current trends and developments in the art world?

Yi Gong: Again, as an online gallery, we make sure to stay in the loop with new art trends and developments in a variety of ways. We keep an eye on art auctions, exhibitions worldwide, and closely track secondary market prices for similar artworks. We also maintain strong connections with artists, collectors, and industry insiders to gain valuable insights. Additionally, we follow reputable art publications, websites, and blogs, and actively participate in prestigious art events. Our constant engagement with the art community and regular attendance at art fairs and exhibitions helps us stay up-to-date and offer fresh and exciting artworks to our collectors at competitive prices.

Installation view of "From Superflat to Bubblewrap" (2021) at the L.A. Art Show. Courtesy of Pinto Gallery, Los Angeles.

Installation view of “From Superflat to Bubblewrap” (2021) at the L.A. Art Show. Courtesy of Pinto Gallery, Los Angeles.

Authenticity and quality of artwork are common concerns for collectors, particularly when buying online. How do you ensure both points with the artworks you sell online?

Yi Gong: While selling and buying, we take authenticity and quality very seriously. To ensure authenticity, we store and sell all our prints in the original, unopened Kaikai Kiki Gallery box, and each print comes with a certificate of authenticity. Additionally, we provide high-quality images and even videos to showcase the materials, textures, and details of the artwork from different viewpoints, allowing collectors to have a comprehensive understanding of its quality. By combining these measures, we aim to address common concerns associated with online art purchases and provide a trustworthy and reliable buying experience for our collectors.

Of course, with an online gallery there are questions about the practical aspects of buying and selling artwork; what can collectors expect regarding the shipping and handling of the artworks they buy?

Yi Gong: At Pinto, we offer free worldwide shipping and partner with reputable shipping carriers to ensure safe and secure delivery. All artworks are carefully packaged to prevent any damage during transit. We also provide full insurance coverage to protect against any unforeseen circumstances. Our dedicated team is always ready to address any shipping or handling concerns promptly and professionally. Our goal is to provide collectors with a smooth and worry-free buying experience.

What’s next? Is there any gallery news or something on the horizon that you are particularly excited about that you can share with us?

Peric Fang: We’ve got some exciting plans on the horizon that we can’t wait to share with everyone! We’re currently working on collaborating with young artists from Asia and showcasing their talent to the world. We’re also thrilled about our upcoming art fair ventures outside of Los Angeles, with plans to host exhibitions in cities like San Francisco, Miami, New York, and more. These endeavors will provide a unique opportunity for artists and collectors to connect and appreciate art in person. Stay tuned for more updates on our gallery news and exciting ventures in the near future!

Learn more about Pinto Gallery, Los Angeles, here.

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