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Date: Wednesday, May 24, 2023, 11:30 AM – 1:30 PM EST/4:30PM - 6:30 PM GMT
The Gavel is a pitch competition that sits within the innovative Enterprise Studio - the graduate student center for art and entrepreneurship at Sotheby's Institute, open to MA students and alums.

For several years we have asked incoming graduate students what sector they intend to pursue after their studies at Sotheby’s Institute, almost half self-identify as future entrepreneurs. It is to support these up-and-coming disruptors, innovators, and change-makers of the art world that Sotheby’s Institute has established a resource center for our students and alumni entrepreneurs: the Enterprise Studio.

Students who intend to launch a business shortly after their studies may participate in our annual Enterprise Studio competition – The Gavel. The students accepted each year are supported as they develop their business idea over the course of the academic year, with close access to mentors who advise them as they shape their plans from ideation to execution.

The winning team of The Gavel become Enterprise Studio Fellows for one year, receiving significant support to grow their business:

  • 1 year of gratis office and event space in NYC or London, from which to base and launch their start-up
  • £30,000 / $40,000 seed funding
  • Mentor support
  • Industry and investment introductions

This year's competition takes place on May 24, judges and mentors include:

Brian McConville
Brian has held multiple high level positions in the art industry including: EVP a at Artnet, Vice Chairman at Artnews and President of Collectrium where he engineered the company’s sale to Christie’s. Brian is also an angel investor and avid art collector.

Jeremy Kagan
Jeremy is the former Executive Director of the Lang Center at Columbia Business School, an angel investor and Entrepreneurship Professor at both NYU’s Stern School and Cornell University. He is also an expert in digital and social media marketing.