Interview to Giorgia Ligasacchi: Marketing and Communication Manager – Art Department at Negri-Clementi Studio Legale Associato

A pleasant chat with Giorgia Ligasacchi, Marketing and Communication Manager of the Art Department of our partner Negri-Clementi Studio Legale Associato, who tells us about her work at the law firm and her perspectives on the relationship between art and technology.

SpeakART: Good morning, Giorgia. It is a pleasure to have you here with us. Could you describe us briefly the role you have at Studio Legale Associato Negri-Clementi?
Giorgia Ligasacchi: I am an art consultant and this means that – thanks to the collaboration with a network of partner of excellence – I offer specialistic assistance service in the fine art and art collectibles sectors orienting the clients in the ancient, modern and contemporary art markets, offering ad hoc solutions for the creation, the management, the enhancement, the protection and the maintenance of the artistic heritage. I am marketing and communication manager of the firm, co-editor and editorial supervisor of ART&LAW, scientific magazine of legal origin. I collaborate as a professor with universities, business schools, academies and art institutes, I regularly write on newspapers and sector publications in the field of cultural heritage, art and creativity, I create, curate and organize training courses, conferences, panel discussions, workshops, webinars on artistic, economic and legal disciplines.

SpeakArt: When was this great passion for art that we all strongly perceive in your daily work born for you? Did this work materialize along the way or was it a predetermined choice confirmed by the time?
Giorgia Ligasacchi: My sensitivity to art comes largely from the context in which I grew up. I am lucky to have two parents who educated me to the importance and the value – also social – of art and culture in general, bringing me since I was a child to visit museums and exhibitions in Italy and abroad, to attend plays at the theater and stimulating me daily with newspaper articles and books. This approach has surely influenced and contributed to my forma mentis. In addition, I like to think that my great passion for art has always been in my DNA thanks to a grandfather who was a painter and then a creative publicist. Even if I have never meet him, he has always been present in the memory and in the family stories.

SpeakArt: Your first working experiences were in the art sector, but in two different environments: on side the museum one (Leonardo3 museum) and on the other side the insurance one (Axa Art Versicherung Ag). Which teachings could you say you have brought home, and in which way do they help you in your professional path today?
Giorgia Ligasacchi: Both the realities turned out to be a great gym for my personal growth and my professional training and fundamental, especially the insurance experience, for my future choices. I remember fondly my Axa Art colleagues, with whom I still have the luck to collaborate and discuss. They provided me with precious tools and taught me an approach to work which is serious, professional and responsible and at the same time curios, open to the change and to the unexpected. I have learned the importance of knowledge sharing, of always questioning oneself and – above all – the value of human relationships, teachings that I jealously keep.

SpeakArt: How was your first contact with the legal sector?
Giorgia Ligasacchi: It all started with my master thesis paper focused on the phenomenon corporate art collection in Italy and in particular on the analysis of the possible benefits that art can bring into the business organizations through the observation and the study of their budgets and of some profitability indicators. From the research a new and little known reality, strongly interested in corporate collecting, emerged: law firms, which increasingly look like real art galleries. Some of them exhibits the collection of the founder or of the partners (mostly born from a passion) to embellish and enhance the working environment, others host for a period the solo show of an emergent artist or rent the artworks through direct collaborations with collectors, artists or galleries, still others like Negri-Clementi decide to build a legal practice with the goal to give order and clarity to a market often opaque and complex. Having an art collection brings the law firm closer to a clientele and to a high target, it is helpful to gains credit on an entourage made of collectors. If you think about it, it is easier to explain the specific art law and art advisory service offered to a collector if the same law firm presents itself as a collector, because they speak the same language and they share the same problems and the same feelings. There are many law firms that in the last years have specialized in this field, often attracted by the high profitability of the sector and by the continuous new demands of the clientele. Besides having companies, real estates and stocks, they are owner of an artistic asset that need to be managed in the best way to avoid pauperization. In this way my first liaison with the legal sector and in particular with the Negri-Clementi Law Firm took place, on the university benches.

SpeakART: Can you tell us your typical day to make us better understand what your role consists of?
Giorgia Ligasacchi:No day is the same as the other; and this is what I love most of my job. As regards the art advisory activities, I go from visiting, studying and cataloguing collections (heterogeneous by their nature) for submitting to the experts, to the delicate activity of due diligence and of historical-artistic research where I verify the presence of those accompanying elements that are essential and can influence on the identification and on the quality of the artwork (authenticity, provenience in terms of changes of ownership, national and international free circulation), to the signing of consultancy contracts. My interlocutors are private and corporate collectors, auction houses, galleries and art dealers, the superintendence, restorers, insurance agents and specialized transporters, museums, cultural institutions, foundations and artist archives and naturally ArtTech. In addition, now with more difficulties due to the further restrictions for the containment of Covid-19, I like ending my working day with the visit of a gallery exhibition or an auction preview, great occasion to network and update on the news offered by the art and market landscape.

SpeakART: Which consequences had the lockdown period and COVID-19 in general on your work and on the art department of your law firm?
Giorgia Ligasacchi:Today more than ever, in a context of discontinuity, of continuous transformation and uncertainty, the way of working and managing the relationship with customers has changed radically, imposing on everybody an abrupt rethinking of priorities and habits. In these months of pandemic, as regards the art advisory activity, we assisted to a significant increase of questions for knowledge of one’s own artistic heritage – evaluation, enhancement, management and succession planning – to the detriment of those relating to the loan of artworks or to liquidation.

SpeakART: We hear more and more of technologies applied to art. Could you give us your general point of view about the multiple software that proliferates around this world?
Giorgia Ligasacchi: You say well. Today, the application and the uses of new technologies in the art world are various and involved in different fields of interest: from the creation (Artificial Intelligence, digital art) to online buying and selling to the world of services linked to artworks and collectibles. Precisely about it, we assist always more often to the birth of new innovative software, created and meant for simplifying the management of art collections – public or private –, to enhance the artistic heritage and to make slimmer and more cost-effective the work of the professionals. I believe that the proliferation of these digital tools supporting art is an expression of a real need on the part of collectors and sector operators and a manifestation of an increasingly urgent desire to resolve the critical issues that have always afflicted this world. However, I believe that it is also necessary to make a careful selection because, as they say, not all that glitters is gold.

SpeakArt: You know SpeakART project very well, but you know also well the different categories of subjects who could benefit from it. Often the digital world has to face a kind of resistance towards technological innovations: what do you think it is due to? And what is your opinion on this?
Giorgia Ligasacchi: Technology and art are two apparently distant worlds but in reality united since the origin of the word; from the Greek “tékhne-logìa” literally “systematic treatise on an art”. Technology has a specious rationality and points to a goal calculating risks; art, on the contrary, has a rationality mediated by feelings and passions and hardly has a unique and exclusive purpose. The languages and the ways are different and just for their meeting and confrontation, I think that an extremely positive and beneficial relationship can arise. Technology presents itself as a valid ally of art, helping it to be more innovative and efficient. Furthermore, one of the lessons we have learned from this difficult situation of emergency that has forced us to the global and now local lockdown, is certainly the importance and the urgency of planning, enhancing and managing one’s own (including artistic) heritage, activities that can and must be developed and integrated by technology and digital. The Covid-19 alarm has certainly accelerated a trend that had already been underway for some time, attracting the spotlight to the numerous ArtTechs and to the need to digitize the entire sector in a rational and functional way. Although it is still early to predict how and with what pervasiveness this pandemic will impact on all activities, including those relating to the art world, the wish I make is that the restart coincides with the beginning of a virtuous and organized process that really brings about a change for a good and real management of the artistic heritage supported by digital.

SpeakART: As a professional, what benefits do you think SpeakART can generate for the art sector, thanks to its current technology and the projects it is developing?
Giorgia Ligasacchi: In the variegated ArtTech market, SpeakART has immediately attracted my attention for its unique ability to make the IT world interact with the fine art world. Its strength – even in competitive terms – is to go beyond simple management, allowing the artwork to ‘speak for itself’ thanks to the creation of its personal digital fingerprint or digital identity. It herself communicates if it has suffered replacement or damage during transport, and this is possible thanks to an algorithm that allows you to uniquely identify the artwork and check its status at different times by simply comparing two images (made even with the smartphone), a shot at time zero with a more recent one with a ‘frighteningly’ high degree of software reliability. Personally, I think it is a real revolution in the world of collecting and services related to art, which only SpeakART can offer today.