I’ve been in a very business state of mind this week. Part of the gig of being a self represented artist is doing everything else that isn’t painting. There are no complaints from my end, but it’s not always easy. Clearly I am very fortunate in having my own gallery space and rag tag team to help me. They aren’t rag tag, I just like saying that like my life is a movie and you’re watching a trailer. The group of people that help me with shows and communications are wonderful. My Ride or Die crew and I love them deeply.
When you begin to deal with galleries head on, you start to get a clearer picture of how a curator/organization views artists. I feel in today’s age, not many galleries want to take a risk due to financial reasons. It makes sense and I don’t blame them. We all have bills to pay but it can get to be a tad bit ridiculous when asked to pay an enormous hanging fee plus a percentage of sales on top it. If you don’t have a space like I do, then for sure it might be worth it. It’s not that difficult to break even, you add a show to your cv, exposure and such, but I advise you to do your research first. I remember a gallery in Florence demanding 15 000 Euros plus 25% sales fee of every painting sold for a 3 day event. This wasn’t downtown high end Art Basel level representation and they don’t have Victoria Secret models acting as waitresses/bar staff. I feel the need to share my thoughts on this in hopes to help any of you out there who aren’t sure. Don’t get to drunk off the idea and the deal itself. Always repeat the terms to someone who hasn’t heard them and if they look at you funny, well that’s a sign to not jump right in.
It feels like business and gambling at the end of the day. I’m aware of my position and what I’ve worked hard to gain. A little reflection never hurt anyone. Compared to where I was and how I was thinking 10 years ago, I’ve come along way. I’m proud of what I have and how I’ve developed as an artist. My message to you is know your worth and please don’t be shy to ask friends or family for opinions. I did the whole “I’m grown and don’t need nobody ever! The shoes on my feet? I bought ’em” crap and fell flat on my face. Your loved ones want to help you and see you soar. Check yourself before you wreck yourself.