How do you get your artwork into galleries? What are some tips for reaching out to galleries?
I applied online to a couple galleries about 3 or 4 years ago. One of the galleries still reaches out quite often to add me to their shows. The other one was in a sketchy part of town and so I only showed there once. Since then I’ve been approached to show in a few other gallery spaces through people I know in the art community.
It varies. I did a lot of group shows in California. A lot of people asked me to do shows with them. Those have always been great from a business standpoint.
In Utah, I did one at Photo Collective, which I sought out. I did research and found it. That one was the biggest I’ve done in terms of setting it up because I had to pay a sum to rent it out for the night and it was huge.
I had to invest a lot of money into it initially, about $2,000, but luckily it came back good.
But there was a lot of stuff that I never thought of. I had to get someone to check IDs at the door, take money, serve beer.
I think I sold $4,000. $2,000 after costs.
Other than that, most of them have been breweries. I just reach out to do one-night shows. Those are pretty good. There’s not a lot of pressure because I bring a lot of people who buy drinks and the breweries don’t ask for percentages of sales. That’s usually a lot looser vibe. It’s not like a quiet little gallery where you don’t know what to do once you’ve looked at the art if you don’t know anyone. At a brewery you can bring your friends and stand off to the side and talk. I’ve always found it more fun to do them there.
Usually it’s kind of cold. I feel like that’s the best way.
And usually I know the gallery or know friends or artists I admire who have work there and I’ll be like, Okay, my work fits in there too. Every time I’m on the road I make a point to stop into a gallery, feel it out and just talk to them.
I have no problem just talking to people and it’s so easy nowadays. You can just reach out to any artist online or whatever and be like, Hey I’m going to be in your neck of the woods, do you have murals nearby or do you want to meet up for coffee? I do it constantly and a good amount of time they’re like, Yeah, come by the studio and hang out, or, Yeah, come by the gallery space and check it out.