All artists want gallery representation, thats one of the goals right? There are many reputable galleries out there, but there are many galleries just out to take your money. A reputable gallery will never ask artists to pay for representation. If you pay to have your work shown, there is no incentive on the galleries part to sell your work, they have already made their money. A real gallery will ask you to submit work first, then will take a percentage of the work sold. The percentages can seem high, but they take the cost of marketing and bringing in the clientel. Scam galleries will take any artist and take their money.
Here is an example of a scam gallery below. I recieved this email and the gallery had not even seen my work.
Since 1995, we have been bringing a European flair to the heart of downtown Hot Springs Arkansas. Hot Springs has long been known for it’s art community and has garnered national attention as one of the top art communities in the country attracting collectors and art aficionados from around the world. USA Today lists Hot Springs at the top of their 10 city list for “Great Places for Big City Art with a Small Town Feel.”
With long time gallery owner and art lover XXX at the helm, we are expanding on the traditional gallery/artist relationship and adding a new program that targets "break through" artists needing to find gallery support! With the burgeoning local art market, monthly gallery walks as well as the 3 million plus annual visitors Hot Springs already enjoys, Galerie XXX is poised to make a splash in 2010!
Here are some features of participating in Galerie XXX:
Two Full Months of Gallery Representation (Includes Two Gallery Walks)
3 Physical Pieces of Artwork Featured (Includes Framing For Wall Art)
10 Pieces Featured on Tear-Sheet
10 Pieces Featured on Multi-Media Slide-Show DVD
Professionally Written Bio/Tear-Sheet
We’re very excited at the prospect of having you as a Galerie XXX featured artist. Please feel free to let me know of any questions you may have. Looking forward to working with you!
Director of Sales & Marketing
Phone: (800) 555-5555 ext. 164
Fax: (501) 555-5555
I then asked what the price of all this greatness was, and here is the response I recieved.
We share the cost of framing, marketing materials, etc... You're not actually paying for the show itself or the wall space. The standard package is three physical pieces, 10 digital pieces that will be in a slideshow as well as a tear sheet for a 60 day show. The standard investment on the artist's end is $1,500. However, this is flexible depending on how marketable the work is. This opportunity can also potentially yield a lifetime of representation for a select few.
I also wanted to include your work in both our Miami and New York shows. When we speak further? (Hello You have not even seen my work yet-- and you want to take me to NY and Miami)
Vice President of Sales & Marketing
Galerie XXX/XXXX Fine Art
Phone: (800) 555-555 ext. 164
Fax: (501) 555-5555