Friday, December 19, 2008

Artists Vs Collectors Vs. Galleries

Maria String - Photo from the Holiday Edition Sale of Juliana Beasley
The Holiday Season ART Sales...OMG !

They do get better by the minute!

One thing that concerns me is that several artists are having Holiday Limited Edition Sales which, I support and encourage 100% except for the fact that the ART establishment (gallery, owners, art dealers , managers, non- profits org and gallerinas!)are quite upset about it!

The question is what are these organizations doing to save their galleries and feed the artists?

Are they making the smartest business decisions for themselves and the artist?

We know the rents and the artists reputations are high.On the other hand, the Economy is not and several gallery owners keep encouraging the artists to keep creating large photographs in order to attach the high price tag to it. It is not the way to go now folks!

The works of art in this case photographs, will not sell for obvious reasons (not because the work is bad) and the artwork will collect dust till the gallery goes out of business.

In order to sell properly, group shows (which several galleries had done) and smaller artworks (no bigger than 24 x 30 ) is the way to go.In addition I think, being honest and discounting the work before the show will generate better sales than doing backdoor business.

In case some artists and gallery owners have not got the memo,Everybody, I mean everybody from Warhol to Basquiat to Damien Hirst is being currently discounted.
I don't think the work is devalued , is revalued to meet current art market needs for the art market to survive!

Last night , at the Women in Photography party, I saw small 8 x 10 works of Amy Stein , Amy Elkins and Cara Phillips among others and I was quite fascinated because for one thing I had never seen works on that small scale from these artists...well let me tell you... I thought they were gorgeous, so intimate and the image was just as strong as any larger size.

I don't blame an artist for going out and making small edition work for sale. In fact, I give them a lot of credit for getting involved in the art commerce. This way I think artists learned to value more of the works and also know first hand who the work is going to.

Collectors get caught up in the middle of this travesty. We feel also the current Economy pinch , we want to continue collecting art and supporting our favorite artists but , we also worry about the ART establishment looking down at us and making us feel that we are betraying the system.

At the end of the day, being an artist myself and also a businessman , I see both difficult sides of the coin. Wanting to support everybody is the ideal way to be but, in this case I am throwing my life saver to the artists...

Let me know your thoughts about this current Art market trend. If you support it or if you are against it.


Lisa Hunter said...
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Lisa Hunter said...

I don't like to circumvent an artist's relationship with his/her gallery -- I always go through the dealer if there is one. But I assume that if a print sale is out in the open -- not a secret handshake deal in the studio -- that the dealers are okay with it.