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Old 08-21-2018, 02:06 AM
petrastefankova petrastefankova is offline
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How to approach galleries abroad?

Hi, I am based in Slovakia, but I would love to expand my visibility further than in a local art scene. I do not have any useful art related contacts in Europe or the US and I cannot attend exhibition openings abroad. Is there a chance so that my art does not get ignored by proper galleries? (I do not mean galleries for hire, that approach me often) Any suggestions? Thanks.
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Old 08-21-2018, 10:21 AM
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Use Her Name Use Her Name is offline
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Re: How to approach galleries abroad?

I would think it would be the same way that others who do not attend and who do not make an effort to meet the people who run the galleries. Visit their website, and fill out a form then send a portfolio. Sad to say, most of it ends up in the refuse bin. Gallery owners (according to those I have spoken to about this) have 100's of applications per month. Most never really make any effort to meet the gallery owners. The gallery owners I have done business with will actually pay attention to you if you walk in the door, leave your portfolio, fill out their forms correctly and fully. They also like it when you show up to their showings, act enthusiastic about the gallery, volunteer in some way, and etc. Belonging in a gallery is exactly like getting a job. You go through layers of interviews. Often some board of directors (or the other artists) must vote on your admission.

I understand your plight, but in my experience, galleries do want their artists to "show up" for important events. Even in the United States, it is common to try to keep your galleries "clustered" in a situation where you can visit each on various occasions-- as much as your free time and money can justify. I do not know Slovakia's business and taxation rules, but visiting a gallery for an important show is a business write-off here. You probably pay a certain amount per mile for gasoline.

Living as you do in Slovakia, there are several European countries that you can visit via train Europass.

Having no resources, no time, and no ability to do the business of art-- networking, meeting, and even parties is what destroys most would-be artists. This comes from experience. Someone who participates and is reliable is more likely to get into galleries unless you are previously "famous." Get contact information for every artist or gallery owner you ever meet, just as you would potential customers, and keep them updated. Send them a Holiday card. Seriously. Make them not forget you.

This is an experience-based opinion... There are other sides to this coin.
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Old 08-21-2018, 11:18 AM
petrastefankova petrastefankova is offline
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Re: How to approach galleries abroad?

Thank you for your experience Katy. I did visit a few places personally, attended conferences and some art related events while I was living abroad myself, but it got me quite nowhere. At the time I might not be quite ready with my digital art focus, but I changed this and started acrylic painting. Most recently I visited a gallery which exhibits Slovakian artists in Austria and I did it a few times with a great effort to speak to the owner. Unfortunately, although the owner loved my work, his curator did not and it was probably the end of the conversation. So I feel refused anyway, with or without the effort I make.
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Old 09-16-2018, 05:46 AM
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Re: How to approach galleries abroad?

Petra, greetings from Poland! I am just beginning my career and I have very limited knowledge of art market.
What are galleries for hire and how you recognize them? I was contacted by some galleries and I don't know how to verify them.
Tom
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Old 09-16-2018, 05:59 AM
petrastefankova petrastefankova is offline
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Re: How to approach galleries abroad?

Hi Tom, those are galleries which you need to pay rent for space to. Some are known for this and I usually do not work with them. But the way to verify them is to speak to artists who exhibited their work with them and google them too.
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Old 09-16-2018, 06:18 AM
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tomdraug tomdraug is offline
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Re: How to approach galleries abroad?

Oh I see! How much they charge?
You create lovely art!!
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Old 09-16-2018, 06:24 AM
petrastefankova petrastefankova is offline
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Re: How to approach galleries abroad?

Thank you for your comment on my work, Tom. They charge thousands of pounds/dollars/euros for a solo show.
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Old 09-16-2018, 06:42 AM
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Re: How to approach galleries abroad?

Oh I see! This is extortion. I wish you luck to find honest galleries, let's hope there are some left.
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