A Few Pointers For Approaching Art Galleries

Approaching art galleries for the first time can be quite intimidating for an artist. It is important to realize that although a gallery owner may have a passion for art, his or her main concern is making a profit for the business. There are a few tips you can follow, if you feel you are ready to approach an art gallery for the first time.

First of all, you don’t have to have a degree, or be on the cover of ArtForum magazine, for your artwork to be valuable. Many people are simply born with a gift, and showcase that talent in their artwork. Others may be self-taught, and have a very unique way of expressing themselves on canvas. Regardless of your background, the one thing that really matters is whether or not your artwork is marketable.

It is important that you realize that art galleries are also businesses, and they are interested in making a profit. It is likely that you will have to endure a few rejections, before you get to a “yes”. It is not personal. These owners are very aware of what sells, and what doesn’t sell in their galleries. So, in many cases, it has more to do with the clientele than your artwork.

Another thing to think about is the type of gallery in which your artwork would be most successful. It is not a good idea to approach a gallery that specializes in modern art, if your pieces do not reflect this style. Do some research, and compile a list of galleries that best suit your style of work. Visit each gallery to see what type of art they are selling, and get a feel for the environment and client base.

Most dealers would rather schedule an appointment with the artist. If you find a gallery that you feel would be a good match, call the gallery to schedule a meeting with the owner or gallery dealer. Most dealers prefer meetings during the week, so keep this in mind if you are asked to suggest a day to meet.

Take some time to pick out some of your best samples to present at the appointment. If this is the first time your artwork will ever be displayed in an art gallery, you may want to ask the dealer to explain their policies and procedures at the beginning of the meeting. Many galleries have a standard commission range that they follow.

If the dealer feels that your artwork is a good fit for the gallery, he or she should present you with some type of contract. This should include the amount of time they will present your work; as well as, the amount of commission that will be kept by the gallery. If the dealer does not feel that you and the gallery are a good match, be sure to ask if he or she can recommend another gallery.

The most important thing to remember, when presenting your work to art galleries, is that you should not always take rejection as a critique. If the gallery has been in business for a long time, the dealer probably knows what the clientele will buy. Just keep trying, and you may eventually find the perfect gallery to hang your work.

By Laura