I'm very excited (and stressed) to be the artist of the month at the Loft Gallery for August.
At a co-opt gallery the artist is a one man show and is in charge of everything dealing with the show (hopefully with help from your friends at the gallery). I have a check list which feels a mile long. The shows always sneak up on me. It always seems like it is so far down the road, but you have deadlines a couple of months out for ordering things like your postcards, frames, creating a write up for publicity and the list goes on!
Tips: Just some of the things to think about if you are having a show:Photograph all your work. You'll need that for your postcards and advertisement, plus once its purchased you won't have the opportunity to do it! If you forget until the last minute chances are you won't do it or it will already be varnished or behind glass so it will be harder to get a good photo. Also, arrange to photograph your work once it is hung.
Besides frames what kinds of things do you need to order? Letters for wall signage? Postcards? Postcards need to be mailed out a couple of weeks before the show.
There will be things you will need to make or have done....posters, labels for your work, a list of your work for the front desk, certificates of authenticity, etc. Decide your pricing. Include your prices when you post them online for the show. Will you have your prices on the labels or on a inventory sheet for people to pick up? Decisions, decisions!
Labels: Include Your name, title, price, medium and size. Some people can't visualize size so that helps if they have a specific place they want it to hang. I've certainly bought something and got home and found it was just a little too big. I like to attach a label on the back so your patron will have all that information about the painting when they get home.
Email your photographs to whoever is in charge of the venue's webpage. Do they have a Facebook page? Make sure you are on it too.
Check to make sure you've signed all your work. You'd be surprised how often you'll find at least one you've somehow missed and have the person buying it point that out to you.
Do you have the supplies you need to transport safely? Those expensive frames are so easy to nick up.
Measure the space where you will be hanging ahead of time. If you haven't hung a show, I would suggest you guesstimate how long you think it will take, then double that. Don't forget you will be working around the show that is coming down. Find out if you may need to touch up the walls. If so, you'll need time for the paint to dry. I would suggest that if you have the luxury of having the space at home or in your studio to lay out your work before you go to the gallery and create a diagram to help save time.
...and we haven't even started to think about the reception!!