How to Get Represented by a Gallery

During the course of their careers, some artists will decide to seek out representation by a commercial gallery. This can provide a number of benefits, including exposure to a wider audience and a reduction in the amount of self-marketing required by the artist. But not every art gallery is equal, and it is important for artists to do their research before signing on with a new representative.

Ideally, a gallery will have a well-established reputation and a loyal client base. The gallery will also have a clear sense of what kind of work it represents, and will only take on artwork that reflects this. It is important for an artist to understand the kinds of themes and styles that are usually displayed at a particular gallery before seeking out representation.

Some galleries will actively seek out new artists to represent, while others will be more passive about their process. When a gallery is looking for new work to feature, it will often post calls for submissions on its website or in print publications. Other galleries will only accept submissions from artists that are recommended by another artist or gallery.

When submitting to a gallery, it is important to include the name and contact information of your studio, as well as images of your work. A brief description of the work and its inspiration is also helpful. The gallery will then review your work and decide whether to accept or decline it.

Once a gallery has accepted an exhibition, it will then work to promote the show and increase attendance. This can be done through social media, email, and by tapping into the gallery’s network of collectors and fans. It is also important to promote the gallery’s involvement in special events, such as artist talks and workshops.

Gallery wall texts and labels are crucial for interpreting artwork. They are the first line of interpretation that a visitor will encounter, and should give them an idea of what the exhibition is about without overwhelming or confusing them. They should also inform visitors of how the works were made and why they were grouped together, and answer any questions that might arise.

Depending on the nature of the artwork, gallery wall texts can be written in a variety of ways. Some may be more informal, such as stream-of-consciousness rants or quotes from literary works. Others may be more academic, using technical terms and scholarly discourse. In either case, the writing should be clear and engaging.

While it is possible to find a gallery to represent your work, it is important for artists to understand that they will ultimately receive only about 50% of the sales revenue from their works. The gallery will also need to spend time and money promoting the work, and this should be accounted for in your negotiations with the gallery. Moreover, avoid galleries that require submission fees or charge for admission. These are known as vanity galleries, and they are generally not in the best interest of artists.