Exhibiting Your Art Work

January 16, 2016

I know…its been quite awhile since I've posted. I've been using the time to make my own work which really is a good thing. But I came across this article today – thanks to Cynthia Tineapple, for pointing it out! I think it is important enough to share since it's about the 5 crucial things to do AFTER an art opening. It's great info and really made me think about the exhibition process:

 

Typically we work like crazy to finish the work for an exhibit. Everything leads up to the exhibit and then once we get past that blip on the calendar we pat ourselves on the back for getting through the work of it. But there are some really good things you can do to stretch the momentum of an exhibit and resulting PR. Alyson Stanfield is known as a creative ArtBiz Coach. Check out her simple ideas here:

http://www.artbizblog.com/?mc_cid=d4c6101fcc&mc_eid=fc1f732b6d

To add to her ideas would be to:

1. Photograph the exhibit in place. Photos of an exhibit are useful for showing a professional display, future PR and adds credibility. Images for future postcards, etc. are always useful.

2. Always thank the gallery formally: send them a nice note. The personal touch from you recognizing their effort in your behalf helps to create a good relationship with the gallery. Fostering that relationship can only help you in the future.

3. Ask the gallery for PR materials to help promote your exhibit and periodically see if there are other times/other exhibits you can help to promote for them. This is good pay back and will ultimately pay YOU back in the long run because you have made a lasting impression with the gallery.

Good impressions, positive relationships, great connections accelerate an art career.

 

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A Mariano Fortuny original

Isabelle de Borchgrave Paper Fortuny Recreation

 

 

My friend Nan and I went to the Bellevue Arts Museum to see the amazing paper clothing creations by Isabelle de Borchgrave, a Belgian artist. She recreated the clothing designed by Mariano Fortuny totally in paper. Using trompe l'oeil and a variety of papers, wonderful dashes of pearlized/metallic acrylic paint and stencils each creation magnificently imitates fabric. I could've sworn that one coat was velvet but everything is paper right down to the beads on the dresses, hats, boots, shoes, pillows, backdrops, curtains and even the hand bags.<\p>We learned from a Museum docent that the clothing creations have chicken wire in between the lining and outer layers of papers to make them free standing. Then they can be shipped in whole without folding or handling too much. The crates must be huge! We also learned that the diaphanous kimono are made from eye glass lens cleaning paper, a spun bond material that is translucent. This is what is used in the picture for the robe over the under dress. The paper is stenciled with a gold pattern on this piece. Can you believe that this is completely made of paper? Isn't that wonderful?

This was a totally eye opening and awesome exhibit. One if my favorite things was the full size tent created from paper. It was like a Morroccan tent draped with opaque and translucent curtains stenciled with patterns. Gold, pierced 'metal' lanterns were hung inside – all made from paper.

Screens and backdrops were draped around the exhibit creating mystery at every turn. The privacy screens were stenciled with Moorish patterns in subtle colors and reminiscent of rugs. Then in the center rectangle the centers of the repeating pattern element were cut out. In some cases, the edges were gilded or painted a contrasting color. Simple and elegant atmosphere for a really wonderful body of work. As Nan said to me when the elevator doors began to open on the exhibit: Prepare to hyperventilate. She wasn't kidding!

 

My friend Nan and I went to the Bellevue Arts Museum to see the amazing paper clothing creations by Isabelle de Borchgrave, a Belgian artist. She recreated the clothing designed by Mariano Fortuny totally in paper. Using trompe l'oeil and a variety of papers, wonderful dashes of pearlized/metallic acrylic paint and stencils each creation magnificently imitates fabric. I could've sworn that one coat was velvet but everything is paper right down to the beads on the dresses, hats, boots, shoes, pillows, backdrops, curtains and even the hand bags.We learned from a Museum docent that the clothing creations have chicken wire in between the lining and outer layers of papers to make them free standing. Then they can be shipped in whole without folding or handling too much. The crates must be huge!

A Mariano Fortuny original

Isabelle de Borchgrave Paper Fortuny Recreation

We also learned that the diaphanous kimono are made from eye glass lens cleaning paper, a spun bond material that is translucent. This is what is used in the picture for the robe over the under dress. The paper is stenciled with a gold pattern on this piece. Can you believe that this is completely made of paper? Isn't that wonderful?

This was a totally eye opening and awesome exhibit. One if my favorite things was the full size tent created from paper. It was like a Morroccan tent draped with opaque and translucent curtains stenciled with patterns. Gold, pierced 'metal' lanterns were hung inside – all made from paper.

Screens and backdrops were draped around the exhibit creating mystery at every turn. The privacy screens were stenciled with Moorish patterns in subtle colors and reminiscent of rugs. Then in the center rectangle the centers of the repeating pattern element were cut out. In some cases, the edges were gilded or painted a contrasting color. Simple and elegant atmosphere for a really wonderful body of work. As Nan said to me when the elevator doors began to open on the exhibit: Prepare to hyperventilate. She wasn't kidding!

 

Art Inventory

December 5, 2013

Oh-oh, a loaded subject. I can see eyes glazing over and thoughts of: do I have to??? I know I've blogged about business for artists before, in a lot of different ways but inventory deserves it's own space and time. It isn't that hard once you're set up for it. The advantages are knowing where your pieces are, what you priced them for, what sold or what didn't plus make it so much easier for a gallery or sales venue (and you, too) by having a together inventory. If you refer to the picture below of one of my past inventory sheets you'll see how it easy it is for the person making the sale to mark off which item sold. It helps to provide a small picture for them to identify the item at a glance so all they need do is mark it sold with the date or a check mark. Having this information is invaluable for me to match items to a particular sales venue. If something doesn't sell at one place it might at another so I increase my odds of making some money from my work. Plus it makes it simple for the venue to track my items.

For mixed media artists I suggest sitting down with everything you've made and categorize it. Create a table for each category. If you have paintings and collages then you would have one table for each. This makes it much easier to refer to the appropriate page for more information when a customer asks a question or for you to track items. I can't tell you how many artists show up at a gallery without an inventory much less an organized inventory of their work. The goal is to make it easy for you, a gallery or other sales venue to sell your wonderful work.

 

  In scouring the internet when researching, etc. I run across tons of resources and thought I would share them with you.  Of course, I was scouring instead of finishing up the studio (see my last post).  I do need to get back in there and get everything put away so I can get some new work made for an upcoming exhibit but you know, like most artists, I seem to function only with deadlines. I don’t like deadlines or thrive on them but if left to my own devices…well, I wouldn’t get anything done without them. Does this sound familiar to you?  You’re not alone!

This page offers ideas for Avery’s two sided, clean edged, business cards and Avery’s Design and Print Online.

  http://www.avery.com/AveryNextGen/url/Newsletter/Volume-9-Number-2/Featured-Articles?ic_campID=4&ic_pkw=Jun+BusCards

  There are also articles there on how to use mail merge for mailing lists, and make address labels as well as other stuff.

  As an artist, it’s important to be aware of how you present yourself and your work. As a gallery curator/coordinator, I see artist’s work, resumes, biographies, etc. all the time.  I can’t stress enough how important it is to pay attention to your presentation. I have seen artist’s bring their work for hanging without any way to hang it and even terribly dusty and dirty.  Typically a gallery will clean the glass of a framed work if needed but it’s not necessary to subject the gallery to your dust or expect them to produce shadow boxes for your 3 dimensional pieces. 

  As an exhibiting artist, I think I can safely say that the presentation of my work to a gallery is half the battle of getting my work into an exhibit.  I know they appreciate the thought I’ve put into trying to make their job easier so that looking at what I’m offering isn’t a big headache to them.  Consider approaching a gallery for an informational interview to hear their ideas on what they want to see in the way of artist submissions.  If you submit what they want to deal with, even if it costs you a little money, could be worth the long run.  It’s not so scary if you know you’re submitting what they’re asking for. 

  Just remember that it isn’t your work or you that is “rejected”.  Oftentimes, it’s that you may not fit what the gallery is looking for in terms of type of work at that time. Submit again at a later date and try again. If possible, set up a meeting with them to hear what they were looking for, their selection process and if they have any advice for you. I know this sounds bold but look at it as research for the business of your work.  If a gallery has the time to meet with you use it as a precious opportunity to learn the things you wouldn’t know otherwise. Don’t look at it as one more time to hear why you didn’t measure up – it isn’t always all about you!  You will be very surprised by what you learn.  =)