The R&D Tax Credit Aspects of Digital Art and Blockchain Technology
Throughout history, there have been
different forms of art that have evolved due to changes in our
society. One of the new popular types of art that has been
introduced within the industry is the form of digital art.
With digital art, art is visually seen from a new perspective
which expands the user experience.
The creation of digital art is now possible thanks to emerging
technology, the Internet, and software programs. New forms of
technology allow artists to explore and expand their
creativity in order to develop thought provoking artwork.
Besides the creation of digital art, technology has also
provided the security of an artist’s ownership and created a
greater sense of transparency for selling art.
The Research &
Development Tax Credit
Enacted in 1981, the
Federal Research and Development (R&D) Tax Credit allows a
credit of up to 13 percent of eligible spending for new and
improved products and processes. Qualified research must meet
the following four criteria:
Eligible costs include employee wages, cost of supplies, cost
of testing, contract research expenses, and costs associated
with developing a patent. On December 18, 2015 President Obama
signed the bill making the R&D Tax Credit permanent.
Beginning in 2016, the R&D credit can be used to offset
Alternative Minimum tax and startup businesses can utilize the
credit against $250,000 per year in payroll taxes.
- New or improved products,
processes, or software
- Technological in nature
- Elimination of uncertainty
- Process of experimentation
Technology in the Art
The art industry is changing due to recent
innovations in technology. Now that individuals have
greater access to art, there has been an increase in the
amount of galleries showcasing digital artwork. It has also
now become easier to confirm the authenticity of artwork.
The marketplace for art buyers has grown due to the
possibility of online auctions. The rising number of galleries
showcasing art (including digital art) assists in increasing
the publicity of an artist and allows the public to experience
something new. With the development of blockchain technology,
verifying and purchasing the authenticity of original artwork
for buyers has become easier.
Digital Art Technology
There are many galleries that display
artists’ digital work, which utilizes various types of
Innovative art designs utilize equipment, such as LED lights ,
crystal screens, computer sensors and 3D printing. These types
of equipment are needed to showcase an artist’s concept for a
particular work of art or sometimes even technology itself is
utilized as a part of the art.
Formlabs and Pixologic have collaborated with
one another to give artists the tools to bring sculptures to
life. Formlabs developed the Form 2 3D printer while Pixologic
created the ZBrush. Both of these technologies are integrated
into one system ; artists can utilize ZBrush to design and
send their creation to Preform’s software through a 3D
printing bridge. The software is used to finalize the design, which can then be wirelessly sent to
the Form 2 3D printer. The combination of these modern devices
allows artists to effortlessly develop their designs and
create sculptures in one simple process.
Patrick Tresset is a unique artist from London who has
constructed robots to create portraits. Tresset spent around a
decade developing his robots , which are known as Paul and
e-David. He specifically designed the robots to have a
camera to generate an image of the particular subject and a
robotic arm to create the portrait. The robotic arm was
constructed with joints for various forms of mobility in order
for the pen to move in any direction, including raising or
lowering the pen. Specifically, the e-David robot was
constructed to hold up to five brushes offering a greater
number of painting options and colors to utilize for a piece
Menlo Park, California, teamLab and Pace Art + Technology
developed an exhibition during 2016 showcasing digital artwork
within a 20,000 square foot area. In particular, there
was a showcase displaying a digital butterfly exhibit. Digital
butterflies were displayed throughout the room and in real
time the patterns would change on the butterfly’s wings.
Virtualized art was able to be constructed due to the
assistance of modern technology.
The Color Box
The Color Box was designed as an interactive art experience
for individuals. The Color Box is essentially a room where
individuals can experience changing colors and lights.
Different visual displays are shown and viewers are meant to
feel like they are a part of the art. To create this display,
projectors, technology switchers, video software, lighting, a
computer and cables are utilized. Incorporating these types of
technology results in a unique experience for viewers to
receive a different perspective of art.
Dell and Mashable
Dell and Mashable partnered up to showcase art through a
digital presentation by utilizing Dell laptops. Dell
displayed various artworks through their new XPS laptop. The
laptop features a virtually borderless InfinityEdge display
which was showcased on a larger laptop that was built just for
The laptop was built to provide an interactive experience, so
viewers could step across the keyboard and see the artwork
displayed across the laptop’s screen and onto the walls.
Besides the huge interactive laptop, there were multiple XPS
Dell laptop products positioned across the walls to display
artwork from various artists.
Digital Art Companies
Based in New York, Meural is a digital art
company who began selling their Meural Canvases in 2015. With
the help of angel funding from numerous investors, their
business was able to expand. The product contains a built-in
ambient light sensor and an anti-glare matte display to
properly showcase digital art in any setting. The
showcase of art can be determined through an interactive
experience or controlled from Meural’s application.
The ease of digital art offered by Meural Canvases is due to
its connection to the internet, its built-in memory, and
energy efficiency. The internet allows users to add their
desired art and update it at any time. The device has 8GB of
memory allowing the storage of approximately 2,000 pictures.
Meural Canvases are also energy efficient due to its design of
consuming a lower amount of energy.
Besides Meural of New York, there are other companies, such as
Electric Objects of New York, and Art.com of California, who
are also involved in developing and selling digital art frames
for users to purchase and display artwork. Each company offers
a product that has the same concept of displaying digital
images, but differs in relation to certain specifications and
features for each product.
Blockchain is essentially a network
that all users can access and is being utilized within the art
industry. This form of technology is useful in providing
security for payments and managing data by tracking past
transactions. A blockchain consists of a data structure
that allows it to create a digital ledger of transactions and
distribute it among a network of computers. Algorithms are
utilized to analyze a potential transaction and a large amount
of nodes (computers) within the system are utilized to
determine if a transaction is valid.
Within the art industry, there is a large problem with usage
rights of an individual’s original artwork. The authenticity
and ownership of an artist’s work is important because an
artist deserves to be recognized for their work. With the
implementation of blockchain the authenticity of a product can
Bitcoin technology relies on a blockchain ledger and is
normally used for the exchange of currency. In the art world,
a similar concept is utilized where Bitcoin can be utilized
instead of a paper copy of a license to determine the
authenticity of a piece of art. Authenticity can be confirmed
by utilizing a hash value, which is a set of cryptographic
functions that allow individuals to identify a set of
data. The hash value essentially allows buyers to
determine that the art they are buying is licensed and
actually created by its original artist.
Blockchain technology offers many benefits to artists as well
as buyers. One of the main advantages of blockchain and
bitcoin technology is allowing the digital art world to expand
within the art industry.
There has been an increase in the
popularity of digital art within the art industry which will
only continue to grow in the future as technology becomes more
advanced. Advancements in technology not only affect the
way digital art is portrayed, but can affect the authenticity
of artwork and how art is purchased as well. Companies
involved with the development of innovative and unique designs
within the digital art industry are eligible to obtain the
R&D tax credit.