Art Insider

Virtual Edition Fair: The GIPHY Arts Spring Showcase

The Game Changers. The Rule Breakers. The Innovators. Discover some of the fantastic emerging talent showcasing their work at The Other Art Fair.


GIPHY Arts is pleased to present a Spring Showcase of very, very short films at The Brooklyn Virtual Editions Fair.

Similar to an animated short, each GIF-length film tells a story through an experimental or narrative lens in under 30 seconds flat and has been adapted from its native Clips format on GIPHY to fit a one of a kind viewing experience, to view exclusively at The Other Art Fair’s Virtual Editions. Today, we speak to GIPHY about the platform and the artists they are showcasing at the fair…

Hi GIPHY Arts! We are so excited to have you on board for the Brooklyn Virtual Editions fair. Please introduce your brand and tell us a little about how it all began…

Thanks for having us! GIPHY Arts was founded in 2016 with the mission of expanding the prominence of the GIF as an artistic medium and format. We do this by directly engaging and commissioning artists, creating new distribution possibilities, and pioneering new technology. 

We had a wonderful time presenting our Moving Booth at the Brooklyn Fair in 2019, and we are thrilled to return this year with our Spring Showcase at the Brooklyn Virtual Edition!

For our readers who are less familiar with the GIF as a medium, can you give us a short description of what a GIF is and its prominence in the digital arts sphere?

The history of the GIF dates back to 1989, when Steve Wilhite developed the Graphics Interchange Format (GIF) at CompuServe. Its primary function at the time was to make it easier to display color images without sacrificing memory and speed. This was all pre-Web, and the files didn’t even loop! 

In 1994, the rising popularity of the web hosting service Geocities gave way to a new, creative use case for the GIF. Ask anyone who was online at the time and they’ll likely tell you about the meticulous folders of GIFs they kept on their computer to adorn their Geocities websites. With this, the cult following and prominence of the GIF as a creative tool was born. 

In what ways does your platform support emerging artists working with GIFs?

GIPHY Arts is proud to commission artists from all over the world for exhibitions like The Other Art Fair, large format public art displays, social good initiatives, experimental technology, and myriad other non-commercial projects. As a platform, GIPHY is also dedicated to supporting artists by building tools and products that create opportunities and foster growth. Most recently, we launched our “Hire Me” button to make it easier than ever for partners on GIPHY to reach out to artists directly with paid opportunities. When an artist activates this feature, their profile will also surface in our directory under “Available for Work”, so brands can easily find them. 

We love that the art you present imbues positivity, inclusivity and many more powerful messages. Would you say there is an educational element to your platform?

Absolutely! GIPHY’s core values are all about inclusion, positivity, diversity, and promoting social good. We are inspired every day by the way artists in our community use their art and their voice to promote these values, and amplify their own. Throughout the pandemic, artists have created passionate and impactful works in response to Covid-19, and in support of the Black Lives Matter and Stop Asian Hate movements. It’s an incredibly powerful thing to see artists use their art as a call to action, reaching millions of people around the world via GIPHY. 

Finally, what can our audience expect from the Spring Showcase presented by GIPHY Arts at The Other Art Fair Brooklyn’s Virtual Editions?

Our Spring Showcase features five new GIF-length films, by artists Amanda Bonaiuto, Burry Junior, Inari Sirola, Julian Gallese, and Yusef Najafi. Each film has been adapted from its native Clips format on GIPHY to fit a one of a kind viewing experience, available only at The Other Art Fair. We hope the audience will experience surprise and delight as they explore the booth, and are transported to new worlds, in 30 seconds or less.