Researchers have proven time and time again how much of an impact that art has on an individual’s mind and body. The health benefits range anywhere from simply feeling more relaxed due to a decrease in stress and increase in creativity to actually being used as a healing process used in modern medicine.

These long-lasting health benefits come as a result of not only creating art, including through art therapy, but also viewing it. In fact, entering the museum for the purpose of enjoying the art and relaxing rather than racing through it can be psychologically equivalent to a day at the beach. Even more so, as some avid museum goers may attest, viewing great works of art stimulates the same part of the brain as falling in love, according to neurobiologist and professor Semir Zeki.

To learn more about the benefits of art, IVY sat down with member Oliviere Saint, CEO and Founder of Soliviere, an art advisory company which works to help people invest in art through an intellectual approach to foster healthier environments.

What is your background and what inspired you to start Soliviere? What is Soliviere about?
My great grandfather was an artist, he studied at L’Université Paris-Sorbonne and participated in the Exposition Internationale de Arts Décoratifs et Industriels Modernes, held in Paris in 1925. Art is in my blood. I have always been artistic. I was an artist before I decided to study fashion design. While in school, I grew fond of my history classes and ended up changing my major to Art History. My Western Civilizations class lead me to a class on philosophy, which then lead me to one on psychology. As a child, I always had an interest in psychology and human behavior, and this class reminded me of my passion for understanding and studying the human mind.

One of my reasons for transferring out of fashion was that I didn’t like the way business was conducted in that industry. Much to my surprise, business is business no matter the industry or your line of work. When I began to learn about business in the art world, I wasn’t a fan either. I thought about how I would do things differently and what I would change. I realized there was nothing holding me back from simply doing it, and it was then and there that I decided to found Soliviere.

Soliviere is about helping people invest in art with a more cognitive understanding and approach in mind. Instead of thinking of art as merely physical objects, I want people to look within and become aware of the interaction the art they are investing in and incorporating into their surrounding space has with their psyche.

What does it mean for individuals to invest in art through a more intellectual approach? Why is it important?
Investing in art through a more intellectual approach means that instead of evaluating art purely for aesthetics, you take into consideration how it communicates with you, inspires you, influences you — how it interacts with your mind.

This is important because when people learn to be more present in their environment, they also learn a lot about themselves. The better we know and understand ourselves, the wiser we become and the more successful we are. Self-awareness is key for human growth as individuals and as a society, because with it, we also become more empathic.

How does art influence or improve the environment? Why is it important for companies to keep this in mind when it comes to their workspaces? What benefit can it have on people?
Simply put, our environment sends subliminal messages to the mind. Human creativity and performance is at its best when the mind is healthy, happy and inspired. Because art is the purest expression of the human mind, it successfully communicates with us.

It is important for companies to keep environment in mind, because when their employees prosper, they prosper. And the way their employees prosper is by existing in an environment that provides them with the best possible state of mind.

People benefit from a curated environment the same way they benefit from curating all the intellectual data they process. The same way it is important to be mindful of the books you read, the news you follow, or the entertainment you provide your mind with; it is important to be conscious of the environment you spend most of your time in.

What advice do you have for people who are looking to improve their environment by getting art into the space?
My most important advice for anyone looking to invest in art, is to buy art you personally, truly love and connect with. Don’t merely buy art based off of what other people think of it and tell you about it, or because it is speculated that the artist is going to be huge, or because it is said to be a lucrative investment.

My second most important advice is to really take the time to get to know yourself. Premeditate the state of mind you want your environment to inspire and based on that, pay attention to the interaction your mind has in the presence of the art you are looking to purchase before you do.