You *should* feel put upon. I think that's taking the business of art just a bridge too far. ; )

I was juried into several galleries in recent years and felt pleased at the time. After all, good exposure in a downtown situation, etc, etc, right? Well, I didn't really think through the $$ side of it: I did the work, spent substantial $$ matting, framing and shipping the work, and, when sold, the galleries got 40 or 50% depending on the venue. I appreciate that they provide space, staff and promotion but when it costs me at least $100-200 to frame a piece, and the gallery discourages me from sending anything that retails at more than $300-$400 (for a original; prints much less), after the dozen or so hours invested in each piece, it kind of discourages me from pursuing the 'fine art' aspect of my work. Having said that, the business of fine art has always been difficult and uneven for so many. But if you take art - in all its many forms - out of civilization, then we have something like the apocryphal Winston Churchill quote when someone suggested that he cut funding to the arts to pay for Britain’s war: “Then what would we be fighting for?”
The arts really do make a difference. I'm not always sure how, but I try to keep with it. -K

On Sep 20, 2013, at 10:05 AM, Lynette Cook wrote:

Kathy, right: the "exposure thing"! Often that does not come through as planned. It's a good idea to donate unframed art (if a person is going to donate), though a year ago I did give a piece to a nonprofit that quite vocally frowned on that and I had to weigh all the pros and cons very carefully.

FYI: the letter I got yesterday requesting art came about because of a show I'm in right now. Little did I realize that getting juried into this exhibit made me "eligible" for the auction: apparently artists who get in (and pay the usual entry fee) are then tapped for this annual auction to raise money to keep the art galleries going. The twist - obviously to get our hopes up and encourage the art to be forthcoming - is that cash prizes will be offered (none were given for the "regular" show) AND that the 8 lucky people who get prizes will be offered a later exhibit where they can show up to five pieces. There's the usual blurb about lots of press, promotion, etc.

I do feel put upon. After all, isn't the entry fee I already paid, and the percent the venue takes when art sells, supposed to keep the place going? Haven't we artists already done our part? Okay, got that off my chest. . . I feel better.


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