Artist without gallery: myth or reality
Since the advent of the Internet for artists, a lot has changed. First of all, they now have much more opportunities to tell about themselves and their art to the world. Although the traditional system of galleries still exists, they no longer control everything as before. Now collaborating with a gallery is not necessarily the best option for artists. Despite this, many creative people continue to seek their patronage. They do not realize that now almost everything that galleries do for them can do … and more.
The first reason for reducing the influence of galleries is that artists now have the opportunity to directly communicate with society and represent their interests. For the first time in history, artists can attract thousands, tens of thousands and even hundreds of thousands of fans almost completely independently. Previously, the galleries were the ones who paid for advertising and the best positions in major art publications. Although this is happening now, it does not matter. All the huge, fantastic, incredible, constantly evolving new world is now available to almost all artists and art buyers.
Now artists can do everything online. Previously, galleries were almost the only place where people could buy art. Direct communication between artists and buyers practically did not exist. Finding artists was very difficult, even if you had their contact information. The opportunity to meet them and see their art seemed something unreal. As for those numerous artists who worked outside the major markets, they practically had no opportunity to tell people about their existence, not to mention show their art. Today, everything has changed dramatically. The two main functions of galleries — providing artists with a platform to showcase their art and giving collectors and buyers access to this art — are no longer needed. Now everyone can do business as an artist.
Artists are somewhat involved in the fact that many galleries have existed for so long. After all, they believe in a world where they are only required to create art in their studios, while all the dirty work will be done by art galleries or agents. No matter what kind of activity you do, you need to learn how to sell yourself and your skills … this also applies to artists. The Internet, and in particular social networks, provide excellent opportunities for this.
Undoubtedly, some people continue to argue that galleries will always play an important role for artists who lack the marketing skills needed to sell their art. However, social networks are not just marketing; but also the opportunity to talk about his personality.
And now some facts. In general, galleries promote only those artists who make up the bulk of their sales. As for the Internet, here you can promote yourself just by being yourself.
Traditionally, galleries were a necessary step for artists who wanted their art presented to museums, institutes, critics, curators, etc. But in this case, too, everything changed. People are constantly looking for art online, including collectors, curators, investors, gallery owners and anyone interested in art. All hunt for great art stars, and finding them using computers or mobile phones is easier than visiting galleries and artists’ studios.
For artists, the chances of being open online are greater than ever. All sorts of art sites, blogs and other online sites are constantly looking for new art and artists of new quality to present them to their readers in articles, interviews, videos. As a result, more and more artists are seeking recognition of their talent without the participation of traditional galleries.
In addition, the relationship between galleries and artists completely changed. In the old days, artists had to present themselves and their art to galleries, hope and pray for viewing their portfolio. Gallery controlled everything. Artists needed galleries to draw attention to their work. Now they, having online profiles and a large number of subscribers, can control themselves which galleries represent their art.
It should be noted that the Internet is not a panacea. Not all artists can live happily after this, because maintaining an attractive online profile takes a lot of time and effort. From the point of view of fame and good luck, the same small percentage of artists will be as popular as in the days before the Internet. However, now, if you create good art and decide to show it in public, then your chances of getting recognition are definitely higher, no matter where you live, what kind of education you received and did you have exhibitions in galleries or not.
For those artists who can’t get along well with people or avoid interacting with society.