Katharine is a mom and wife living in Brooklyn. She majored in Art History and Economics at Williams College in 2004 – a time when people weren’t so sure how art and business could work together. She received her Masters in Art Business from Sotheby’s Institute in London and has been pursuing business-related positions within the art world ever since.
Katharine has experience working at institutions like MoMA, Christie’s, and Gurr Johns, a boutique international appraisal firm. “I was lucky to have a ton of responsibility and exposure with these positions – I traveled to art fairs in Europe, developed marketing plans for our Singapore office, and always worked closely with leaders of each organization to understand what fuels a successful business. When I had the opportunity to build my own business, I took it.” Enter Mason Lane.
Mandalyn: What is Mason Lane and how did it begin?
Katharine: Mason Lane is a Brooklyn-based art advisory firm that helps residential and corporate clients style walls nationwide. We help clients figure out what to put on their walls, where to save and where to splurge, and ultimately what’s going to give their space some soul.
I founded Mason Lane 3 years ago because I saw a gap in the market; people who wanted to buy interesting, affordable artworks for their walls didn’t know where to get it, were unsure how it was priced, and hesitant about what they liked. I have a background in art and business, a love for design, and a track record for making clients happy, and I wanted to put it all together in one package. Other art advisors I knew were catering to the ultra-high net worth demographic, and that really didn’t interest me. Rather than helping clients purchase prized blue-chip artwork, I wanted to help new buyers finish their space with something compelling and different that they wouldn’t find on their own.
My process is efficient and approachable, allowing people who were previously intimidated by the art world acquire a baseline of knowledge and feel equipped to buy more art in the future.
Mandalyn Your website says you do projects that are “big and small, pricey and not.” I love that! Can you give an example of each of those?
Katharine: I’ve worked on a few projects where the art budget is around $100k and the art was one of the first things considered in the gut renovation. Other times, I’m sourcing $300 pieces, framing them well, and doing a creative wall installation so the art looks polished and unique rather than low budget. One of my favorite go-to low cost projects is the family photo gallery wall — these bring people SO much joy!