In December 2016 we visited the company Avenso. They are running the 2 famous brands: LUMAS & WHITEWALL. LUMAS is a global gallery network, which offers digital art, authentic photography and contemporary design. WHITEWALL photo lab was one of the first online photo laboratories.
Here is the interview – and have a look at the team and their cool & stylish HQ office in Berlin.
What is your core business?
Over the years LUMAS has been making contemporary photography accessible to a wider audience of art enthusiasts and young collectors – both online and in over 40 galleries around the world.
More than 2,000 works by 230 established artists and rising stars deliver a comprehensive look into the world of contemporary art and design. The works are available in hand-signed limited editions of just 75-150.
By maintaining a close and ongoing relationship with its artists and outstanding production partners, LUMAS enjoys a unique position in its field.
Not only does LUMAS produce limited editions, it is also a widely respected art dealer. By doing everything in-house, from curation to expert production, LUMAS is able to maintain the highest artistic standards while offering exclusive, museum-quality art and photography.
The LUMAS website showcases the entire portfolio, with extensive options to search by colour, theme, technique, content and price.
The website also hosts virtual exhibitions, extensive image galleries and texts about the artists written by renowned authors.
How did you get to your business idea and when was your company established?
Stefanie Harig and Marc Ullrich began collecting art and photography years ago – attending fairs, gallery exhibitions, and visiting artists in their studio.
As their collection grew, their friends noticed and several became interested in dabbling in contemporary art, as well. Harig and Ullrich soon realized that few venues offered work at a lower price point for new collectors.
So they created LUMAS, with the goal of making art more accessible through editions with a slightly higher print run. In November 2004, the first LUMAS Editions Gallery opened in Berlin at the popular Hackescher Markt.
Now – 12 years later – LUMAS Editions can be admired and purchased online and in more than 40 galleries all of the world.
Are you planing to expand your venture in other countries? And if – where?
“One of LUMAS’s missions is to democratize art and make it accessible to as many people as possible.”
Therefore, we are also looking to keep expanding in 2017.
There will be a lot happening this year, and not just in Europe. We can’t really say any more than that at this time.
How many employees work at your company right now? Are you planing to expand?
In total we employ more than 400 people worldwide. Around 110 are based in our headquarters in Berlin, about 130 people at our production site in Frechen near Cologne, and there are even more colleagues in our LUMAS galleries and WhiteWall stores all over the world.
What is the average age of your team members ?
Our team´s average age is between 30 and 35.
What kind of attitude should new employees have to have in order to work at your company?
“We are looking for highly motivated and open-minded candidates with a hands-on mentality and great team spirit, and who are as passionate about our products as we are.”
Why is it fun to work at your company? Do you offer any employee benefits?
Our colleagues from all over the world have a great team spirit and share a passion for art and photography.
We organize company breakfasts, team events (BBQs, company runs, etc.), and once a year, we host our annual company party where employees from all over the world come together and celebrate.
In our headquarters, fresh fruits, sweets and drinks are available.
Our employees can take part in English courses and specialized trainings to further develop their professional and personal skills.
For our employees in the galleries, we offer Sales and Management training as well as a LUMAS Retail Talent program.
Additionally, we provide an attractive employee discount on LUMAS and WhiteWall products.
Do you offer new employees a relocation service or help to relocate?
Our HR Team is always happy to help and support with any questions regarding relocation,
or to provide useful recommendations for Berlin in general.
Do you have a job board?
For LUMAS and WhiteWall, the two brands of AVENSO,
How big is your Office/Production Site?
We have a beautiful space in our HQ at Ernst-Reuter-Platz in the heart of Charlottenburg, where our employees are surrounded by beautiful works of art from the LUMAS Portfolio.
Since the offices are located on the 7th and 8th floor, they offer a spectecular view of Berlin. The office sizes are adaptet to fit the needs of the different teams working at the HQ.
We have smaller office rooms for 2-4 people as well as 3 big open offices for up to app.15 people. Of course there are also spacious meeting room and a lounge.
Another highlight is a small LUMAS showroom within the HQ, where the concept can be experienced first hand.
Did you get help from an interior designer when designing the office? And if so, who did you work together with?
We are lucky to have our own experts in-house – our Shopfitting team takes care of the interior design in our LUMAS galleries, WhiteWall stores and headquarters.
Thank you Lumas & WhiteWall Team for this interview & the photoshooting!
Photos: copyright by the photographer Andreas Lukoschek