Last Monday night, Andy Cooperman and I gave a presentation with Q & A for an audience of students and emerging artists. Co-sponsored by the Academy of Art San Francisco and the S.F. Metal Arts Guild, the event drew an the audience of close to 100. My only disappointment was that we didn't have time to answer all the questions (including a list submitted by students).
Here is one question that always comes forward:
"As a young artist, what is the first step to get my artworks shown in a gallery?" - Eva
Some parts of the answer have been answered in four articles under the heading, SUBMITTING WORK to GALLERIES and RETAIL ESTABLISHMENTS written by Don Friedlich, Andy Cooperman and myself, Harriete Estel Berman.
Galleries: Are They Right for You? by Don Friedlich
Introducing Your Work to a Gallery by Harriete Estel Berman
The Nuts & Bolts of the Gallery.Artist Relationship by Andy Cooperman
Galleries: Issues to Consider After Your Work Has Been Accepted by Andy Cooperman
The information is as solid now as it was in 2009 even though the economy and the Internet have vastly changed the dynamics.
1. There are fewer galleries and stores than there were ten years ago. Galleries and stores have closed there doors for a variety of reasons. Places that were barely surviving could no longer thrive in a bad economy.
2. The craft fair circuit is vastly different. Established shows are not as big, while a new mix of venues have opened up with a more informal flavor.
3. Membership events hosted by museums featuring artists and makers are much more common.
4. Open studios, while not new, are far more frequent.
5. The Internet is the most radical influence. Places like Etsy continue to grow, but there is a huge number of other online marketplaces without a definitive market leader for a juried, exclusive online marketplace.
6. Every gallery now has an online presence.
7. Every artist and maker now can and should have a web site and/or blog.
I am wondering if the question is really, "How can I get my work in a gallery so that the gallery will sell my work, and I can just focus on making and not selling."
Stay tuned to the reality bite....