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Thursday, February 01, 2007

Gallery rotations: keep it fresh!

Something struck me at Bonnie Kahn's Wild West Gallery. When we talked over the matters of my exhibiting there and she selected the works she wanted to start with, she said something I had not heard a gallery owner say before: that she keeps all artwork on a 3-month rotation. Now this is Gallery #7 that I have signed on with, and it's the first time I've heard of one doing that. What a novel idea! I'm sure many others do it, I just haven't encountered it before.

And when you think about it, it only makes sense. If something isn't moving at a particular venue over a period of time, the chances of it moving at all begin to deteriorate. Patrons will get bored looking at it. They may even deem that the artist is not very collectible if the same art is hanging there in the same place, month after month. And if the gallery has many such artists who have works that aren't moving, there will be less draw for the patrons to come in and visit at all.

I have made it a practice to rotate works in and out of galleries. I'll be honest, sometimes these rotations of mine coincide with big shows or back-to-back shows, with a panicked me trying to fill my booth, and then afterwards bringing works back to the galleries from which I borrowed, and having them hand-pick what they wish to display. But whether it's a matter of borrowing for shows or a simple matter of rotation, the end results are the same: the works are swapped regularly, and what I have on display at each venue stays fresh.

If something doesn't move at one venue, it very well may move quickly at another. It really all depends on the audience. I've learned that while generalities work to an extent, when it comes right down to individual subject matter there just isn't any way to guess what will attract whom. there is no science, only educated guesses.

So keeping to a regular rotation of one's work benefits all - the artist, the gallery, and the patron. Keep it fresh!

1 comment:

Catherine said...

This is great info to know.