This summer, two identical twin sisters—one in the tech business, the other a painter—launched a new online venture that almost seamlessly combines their areas of expertise. The result is Flat File
, an online platform that sells unique works on paper by emerging and established artists.
(the artist of the pair) initially had ambitions to open a brick-and-mortar gallery in New York—a fraught proposition, to say the least
. Over the winter holidays last year, she talked it over with her sister Cadran, a software engineer with San Francisco’s Y Combinator (a seed-funding resource for start-ups). “I majored in art in college, and Cadran majored in computer science,” Corydon explains. “We’ve always been similar in a way, but our interests are very opposite.”
Together, they realized that a digital platform could be a way to leverage their own backgrounds and contacts, without investing in a physical space. “It enabled us to experiment, with low overhead,” Corydon says. “That opened up a lot of possibilities that wouldn’t otherwise have been available to us.”
With additional help from their respective partners, Corydon and Cadran started Flat File (its name refers to the multi-leveled drawer often used by artists to organize their archives). Corydon handles curation and outreach, while her sister handles the site architecture and the technical side of things. The goal was to broaden the field of potential art collectors, and reach people who had, for whatever reason, been scared off by the process. “How do we get people interested,” Corydon wondered, “and give them access to this universe?”