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About the Collection by Chris O'Kane

Aspen CEO Chris O’Kane explains why contemporary art is a natural extension of the way his business works.

“Art is a question of human intervention and ingenuity, much like insurance and the way we at Aspen customise solutions for our customers, based on their businesses and the unique risks they face.

Our longstanding interest in art has evolved with the business. The emphasis of our collection is contemporary art, in particular its commentary on the society and economy of today.

Introducing innovation as a response to circumstances that shape the challenges of tomorrow, the collection mirrors our values and approach to insurance. It brings creativity to the fore.

Aspen’s success owes a great deal to creativity. Regardless of the apparently technical nature of underwriting, actuarial and operational work, there is an element of imagination required to figure out the problems that need solutions – and make the solutions relevant to today’s world.

Great underwriters are truly creative; they have to be able to respond to constantly changing environmental and economic risks.

Our collection is a response to these changing environments. It has grown from a small offering built on the advice of friends with experience in the arts into a global phenomenon – thanks to a long-term partnership with the Contemporary Arts Society (CAS) who in 2008 took on the collection initiated by Alexandra Ray of Five Senses Art Consultancy.

Together Aspen and CAS have shaped a collection that articulates mutual ideas of perspective and innovation; of seeing the world and its risks in new ways and responding with new solutions.

Importantly, the art works that we select are striking; they evoke a response from both visitors and employees, who can build a relationship with our art as well as our business.

Our approach is strongest at ground level, where we bring the work of local artists into local offices – not unlike the way we provide local expertise across our global network.

And that network is accessible to all – the door is always open to those who wish to view the collection. You can take a look around now.

Expert Eye

Head of Consultancy at the Contemporary Art Society Fabienne Nicholas curates the collection.

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Perspectives

Financial and art journalist Georgina Adams believes the collection provides value on many levels.

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