Art2o’s Claudia López aspires to quench the world’s thirst for art.
Art water entrepreneur Claudia López in Wynwood.
When she was 15, Claudia López’s American father sent her from her hometown of Bogotá to boarding school in Massachusetts. Her real education, however, took place in New York City, wandering the museums and galleries with her aunt who was passionate about art. But then López returned to Colombia, where she studied law, and her life seemed to veer away from art.
López’s life would eventually veer back in a big way. Eight years ago, she relocated to Paris with her husband and their two sons for his real-estate company. López couldn’t practice law in Paris, so she revisited those long-harbored dreams of studying art. She enrolled in a three-year art history program offered by the Louvre. “When I started learning art history, the way I saw the world changed,” she says. “I wanted to find a way to share that.” In Paris, López noticed another thing: Bottled water was everywhere, peeking out of luxury handbags and perched atop café tables.
When she moved to Miami just under two years ago, López knew that she wanted to share art with people in an approachable way. She launched Art2o—100 percent natural spring water, packaged in bottles featuring an original work of art—last December, as the official water sponsor for the Pulse Art Fair. The goal? Create a growing awareness of art’s impact on our society.
Art2o, which can be found at cafés around Wynwood, in stores like Panther Coffee, and the Bass Museum, MC Kitchen, and many others, currently has three collections, including the Master collection, which features Gustav Klimt’s The Kiss, Sandro Botticelli’s Primavera, and an iconic non-objective work by Wassily Kandinsky. However, López says that while she adores the greatest hits of art history, she also wants to provide exposure for living artists. “We want to be a canvas for them, so they can be seen,” she says. Hence, Art2o features two lines devoted to the art of today; the Inspired By collection asks artists to pay homage to their idols, while the Contemporary collection champions their own original compositions.
López herself scouted the artists who appear on Art2o bottles. She went to the ArtCenter/South Florida, where she encountered “so much talent, so many incredible artists.” There she recruited artists like the Argentine Pablo Contrisciani, who painted an homage to Willem de Kooning for the Inspired By collection.
Beyond the labels, which are printed in New York using a special ink, Art2o offers premium water, sourced from an alkaline spring two kilometers beneath Mississippi. “The inside is just as beautiful as the outside,” says López, who spent more than six months searching for the perfect source.
The company has also taken on several educational initiatives—a look at the brand’s website reveals five “knowledge droplets” that enrich the painting for even the most inarticulate drinker. And for each bottle sold, five cents are reserved to build a nonprofit center for the arts.
PHOTOGRAPHY BY NICK GARCIA
photography by nick garcia