Once again, I’m writing about exhibitions! After all, sharing the work you create with an audience is what all the artists want to do – and need to do - as part of making a living from art.
During the pandemic, more and more of you have become skilled and confident to share your work online and make it possible, likely, and easy, for customers to buy it directly from you, without having met you or seen your artwork directly. I don’t think this trend is going to go away. We are all getting used to viewing and buying online – cars and houses, so why not art? So where and how to share your work online is an important strand in choosing how to exhibit your work.
But there is something special about seeing the actual art and the conversations between artist and customer are very important to both, so it’s been great to see so many exhibitions going ahead this summer, with more still to come. We are fortunate to have two new artists run galleries just opening in Cheltenham, Sixteen Gallery and Spring, Cheltenham, offering new spaces for artists to exhibit.
It can be a daunting process for new artists to find out what is available and everyone is looking again at where and what they should be doing. Exhibiting takes, time, energy and money, so you need to think hard about what is possible and what is most likely to bring you the results you are looking for – with the caveat that often its almost impossible to see why one exhibition has done really well and another one has been miserable! I believe that thinking about how you maintain your personal resilience as an artist is vitally important.
Living from Art members, and the much wider group of artists who subscribe to the newsletter or read the blog on the website are a wonderfully varied group of people, so I’ve struggled with what to usefully include in a blog about where and how to exhibit – in 2021 and beyond. My own style is to explore and analyse all the many different aspects of this huge topic – looking into the detail – and then seek to make sense of them all by grouping my ideas as a mind map. If you are new to exhibiting you can just focus on what you most need to think about – if you are feeling a bit ‘stuck’ with how you’ve exhibited in the past or think there are things that you could be doing better, I hope some of the content may get you thinking afresh. The mind maps will be added to the members' resource bank, but I am happy to send them out to anyone else who would like a copy and/or have a discussion about part of them
Part of my purpose for Living from Art is to facilitate sharing information to support each other wherever we are in our living from Art journey. I would love to develop this conversation, including building a list of exhibition venues available for hire. I will be requesting information via the Facebook page and group – do join in if you will and please do add a comment on the blog page.
All the very best for enjoyable and productive exhibitions for 2021/22