For an aspiring artist, the art gallery is the holy grail of survival, luck, and fame. Without an art gallery, there is very limited opportunity to showcase one’s works, let alone what someone is capable of.
After all, art gallery dealers sometimes patronize an artist based on his or her potential. And this brings us to a discussion of the different types of art galleries that exist. There is a large art gallery and a rather small art gallery for a painter or sculptor to exhibit his or her art. However, classification in terms of size just does not make the cut.
While size does matter, we stand to miss the many nuances of art gallery categories if we were to focus on just one concern. So let’s begin.
The Vanity Art Gallery: What’s in Store?
The first kind of art gallery has the trappings of vanity. And that is why it is called simply just that: a vanity gallery. Vanity art galleries abound in great cities of the world such as New York, Los Angeles, Paris, the contemporary art galleries in Vancouver, or Tokyo. And as you probably would have guessed, this kind of art gallery is sophisticated, spacious, and of course, well-known.
From the point of view of the artist, however, this kind of art gallery is the most expensive. If you are an artist born with a silver spoon in your mouth, you may be able to afford the rent that you will be charged for exhibiting your work. Otherwise, if you are a struggling painter or sculptor–you will probably need a wealthy backer or sponsor to get your art pieces showcased in a vanity art gallery.
The Amazing Perks of the Cooperative Art Gallery
There is a so-called cooperative or artist-run art gallery. It is definitely one of the best types of an art gallery. And that is primarily because compared to the previous type, the organization will not charge you an arm and a leg for your exhibition.
For an apostle of the arts who are still struggling to make both ends meet, the cooperative art gallery is like a breath of fresh air. However, take note, scheduling that one-man or one-woman show can take time because an entire artist colony may be in line! Additionally, be prepared to pay recurring fees as you are likely to be scheduled on a cyclic basis, which is a common arrangement in a cooperative art gallery.
Who Does Not Like a Non-profit Art Gallery
Many artists would stake their career for the opportunity. After all, it is time to rise and shine with all the accolades as well as recognition. The not-for-profit art gallery does not just pick an artist for an exhibition out of thin air.
The curator usually picks up the exhibitor based on referrals from award-giving bodies. That said, it might be hard to make a list unless you are already an artist in great standing. Also, some artists may have it planned all along to join the non-profit art gallery bandwagon.
Accordingly, these creative individuals could be working for years on getting this or that bursary or art grant. After all, it takes a lot of not just guts but elaborate orchestration to get an art gallery with the public’s financial backing. Take note, however, that the organization is highly likely to ask for half of the proceeds–which can be hefty, indeed for an artist who just made a name for his or herself.
Psssst: non-profits have mouths to feed, so-to-speak, and facilities to maintain. Since they rely a lot on donations, they may want to protect themselves from the fall in case your show does not make enough money. So the moral of the story with a non-profit art gallery? Be sure to cover all the bases if you do not want it to rain on your parade.
What’s Up With an Independent Art Gallery?
Well for sure, the owner of the art gallery will want a 50-50 sharing of the proceeds so be prepared for that. And especially if you do not like surprises. Independent owners of an art gallery do not have the luxury of offsetting the cost of an exhibition via donations or public funding, unlike the non-profits.
Despite the partners’ type of profit sharing, the independently owned art gallery often has an iconic following. This is akin to the small independent publisher in the writing industry. Welcome to the club! Going with the independent art gallery means that you have arrived because everyone seems to know you in the business and of course, the art scene. Feels good, doesn’t it?
That after that job is well done, you can literally hear your muse whisper to you that everything will be all right and that your exhibit in the art gallery will be a huge success. All this takes a lot of work,
Whether it’s a landscape painting, a portrait or an abstract piece, it can be a challenge trying to determine whether you should invest in that particular artist and whether the work is actually worth the price. You can be better informed about your purchase if you keep in mind the following:
Don’t use your ears when you buy, use your eyes!
It’s very easy to feel that a piece of contemporary art must be worth buying, because everyone tells you so, and there are many people in the art world who seem to know who is going to be the next great artistic discovery. Good publicity and a large following can turn many artists into stars almost overnight, and you can’t help but feel that all these supporters must be right. But of course, the most important thing for you if you are buying a piece of art is to look and decide for yourself; in other words, use your eyes and don’t listen to what everyone else thinks or tells you. Ask yourself what the work means to you, whether it evokes a feeling and compare it alongside other works you are interested in.
Find out more about the artist
Discovering more about the artist is important too when it comes to making a buying decision, and it allows you to ignore much of the talk and the hype. And meeting an artist in person is also recommended if practical, especially if you find yourself buying several works by that artist. Your response to a piece of art is more informed once you know a little about the artist’s conceptual framework, the work’s aesthetic source, any reference points in the work, and how and why the artist became an artist in the first place.
Don’t buy it as an investment
If you like a piece of art, you should buy it for that reason and not look upon it as a chance to sell it to make a fortune. Realistically that’s probably not going to happen anyway, despite all the stories about works of art, both historical and contemporary, being sold for huge sums. Buying a work of art will support the artist, and your purchase may mean the difference between them continuing doing what they love or having to give it up.
Look at art whenever possible
Your understanding of art becomes a lot deeper the more time you spend in galleries and museums looking at it and trying to understand and appreciate it. You become more proficient in responding to art, the longer you spend looking at it and studying the stories behind the piece or the artist. Connections, references, and insights will all start to occur to you over time, once you allow yourself to take the time to look and immerse yourself in art. Some contemporary art may not do anything for you; set yourself the goal of trying to understand better or appreciate what you are looking at.
Support your local non-profit museums and galleries
Supporting organizations that collect or commission works for public collections is often the best way to support the arts. The major London galleries, such as the Tate and National Gallery welcome patrons, although you can settle for being a patron of your local contemporary gallery. Becoming a patron also makes it easier to meet curators, artists and art critics, not to mention all those invites to exhibitions and other social events. Consider supporting the Contemporary Art Society, the Art Fund, and other organizations that buy work for museums and galleries.
Welcome to Riva Yares Gallery, the contemporary art agency in Vancouver. Whether you’re looking for modern art, sculptures or paintings, the experts at Riva Yares Art Galleries have you covered.
The world of modern art can be a difficult one. Prices of contemporary art have gone up and down repeatedly, with seemingly no pattern. Riva Yares Gallery can support you with the information you need.