Interesting observation, Karen.
In my (limited) experience, most venues that regularly exhibit artwork do insure the art while it is on the premises. There have been exceptions, such as libraries and other non-commercial galleries, and in those cases I just decided I could live with the risk. Perhaps I have not exhibited art frequently enough in recent years to have noticed the trend you suspect – and if it's a trend I would not be surprised. I used to exhibit my work more frequently but have curtailed this practice because of the expense of framing and shipping artwork (and the hassle of sending of sending it across the border).

What struck me about your story is your mention of entry fees. In my opinion, commercial galleries should not be charging entry fees or exhibition fees. I think in some cases when a venue charges an entry fee for a juried exhibit it is acceptable, but only if the fees come back to the artists in some way, such as being divided among the exhibiting artists and/or being used for awards.

Kudos to the GNSI for not charging an entry fee for their annual exhibit!

Emily S. Damstra
natural science illustration
Guelph, Ontario
(519) 616-3654
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Twitter: @EmilyDamstra

On Wed, Oct 19, 2016 at 12:39 AM, Karen Ackoff <[log in to unmask]> wrote:
I’ve been entering a few exhibitions lately, and it’s troubling to find that more and more galleries do not insure the work while it is in their possession. They want the right to use your images in their publicity materials, some require the work be for sale and of course they get a percentage of the sale price, and there is an entry fee. All of that is fine… and I am used to paying shipping/insurance there and back. But they don’t insure it while it is in their possession.

My choice would be to get private insurance or not to submit. I did look into private insurance, but my homeowner’s will only insure artwork up to $1000, and my work is priced higher than that. I’m sure I could pursue other insurance companies, and I’m sure it wouldn’t be cheap. If I can submit a print, then insurance is less of an issue, but there is still the cost of the frame and museum/plexi (no glass as the work is shipped).

The galleries profit from the exhibition and take no responsibility other than “reasonable care” (which is conveniently vague).

I’m surprised that this seems to be more and more common. Wondering what you have experienced, and what you think about this.


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