Pro's & Con's of Gallery Representation

Discussion in 'Presentation & Marketing' started by MurrayMinchin, Sep 23, 2005.

  1. MurrayMinchin

    MurrayMinchin Membership Council

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    Are you represented by a gallery, or several galleries? I'm curious how it's working for you...what are the pro's & con's?

    Murray
     
  2. Peter Schrager

    Peter Schrager Subscriber

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    representation

    I'm going to speak in the second person here. I had a relationship with an extremely famous artist who will remain nameless. He had the best of Gallery representation. On 57th St. in NYC. The best of the best. But Galleries do only so much for an artist. The BEST artists always keep their eyes and ears open and are responsive to other ways of marketing themselves. He had the most famous private art press in the world and made beaucoup bucks off of that. He also taught at a major university here and in Florence. He was also amenable to taking Cash for his work under the table. I know because I have a good collection of his work. He was a great SELF promoter. That's what it's about and don't ever fool yourself that some big time gallery is in it for you-it's about what they can make off of you!
    Best, Peter
     
  3. mikewhi

    mikewhi Restricted Access

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    Yes, I'd say be very very wary of galleries. Of all that I have been to and know, there is only one person that I actually trust in the industry and that is Maggie Weston of the Weston Gallery in Carmel, Ca. I have hear horror story after horror story of galleries selling artists' work and never passing along the proceeds. Galleries even just outright keep the artists work and never return it. I read of one photographer who showed up at a gallery with a few burly friends and 're-claimed' his prints on the spot.

    Personally, if I were an artist I'd stay away from a gallery.

    -Mike
     
  4. Graeme Hird

    Graeme Hird Member

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    Agreed with Peters - self promotion is the key to success.
     
  5. MurrayMinchin

    MurrayMinchin Membership Council

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    Thanks guys but I'd like to hear from photographers who are, or have been, represented by galleries. First-hand personal experience is what I'm looking for.

    Murray
     
  6. Early Riser

    Early Riser Subscriber

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    I've been represented by a fair number of galleries. Some galleries actively promote you and pay you promptly. Others do not. The more established you are, and the more established the galleries, the better the outcome.
     
  7. Donald Miller

    Donald Miller Member

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    My experience is that they are slow to pay.
     
  8. Early Riser

    Early Riser Subscriber

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    Some of them are slow to pay. Then again when I shot advertising most of my clients were slow to pay and they were mostly Fortune 500 companies. I remember Amex taking 5 months on an invoice. What it boils down to is if you want to get paid quickly don't work for yourself.
     
  9. lee

    lee Member

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    I had a gallery in Carmel,CA that had some of my work and when it sold they paid within 3 months as I recall. The problem for me was they kept 1/2 and did not push my work. They wanted rights to all the world when I first was contacted but we got that down to just N Ca later on. As soon as my guy got canned so did I.

    lee\c
     
  10. Steve Sherman

    Steve Sherman Subscriber

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    Gallery Representation

    I was with the Robert Klein Gallery in Boston from the early 90's to the late 90's. Probably sold about a dozen prints in that time. $600.00 for a no name photographer ( 1/2 to me ) is a lot of money for most collectors. I think most of my sales were to the coporate sector. Never had a problem getting paid with Klein.

    Earlier this year I brought some work down to the 1st Street Gallery in Boca Raton FLA. http://www.1streetgallery.com/Index.aspx Beautiful space, loved my work, haven't sold a thing yet!

    The real problem, at least for me is to print a portfolio worthy of showing to galleries takes about a year between traveling and other obligations time slips by.

    I still have doubts about those reporting brisk sales via their web sites, alot of money for something sight unseen. Far too much time and effort go into my prints to sell for a few hundred dollars.

    Without a doubt, I can say having sold photographs for twenty years that the most sales come from personal contact and a little self promotion
     
  11. Nicole

    Nicole Member

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    I suppose you could always open you own gallery.

    One amazing photographer doing a great job that way is Graeme Hird.
     
  12. MurrayMinchin

    MurrayMinchin Membership Council

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    Thanks Nicole for pointing out Graeme's good work. I've contacted a very few photographers about how their images impacted me, and Graeme was one of them...it was probably 6 months ago about an image of jaggedy rocks & surf called, "The Citadel"?...NICE

    Still; what I'm looking for is experiences of those who've actually produced work for sale in commercial galleries. What was good - what was bad - I'm curious!

    Murray
     
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