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What is the "IT" factor to selling your art?


53' X 63" "Diva" Mixed media collage with Gold and Silver leaf on arches paper in a gold frame.

Recently, I dropped by a gallery opening and walked into a dead quiet, albeit, brightly lit space. My first impression was good, the artwork was displayed nicely, however, not a soul greeted me. This was surprising! Was there a death in the family? I noticed the nice display of food and beverages -at least that was welcoming- Finally, the gallery owner made an appearance and reluctantly greeted us with a look of quiet desperation. She acted, as if it was a chore to say "hello" to a potential client, namely me. When I asked about a specific sculpture and it’s price, she barely told me the name of the artist and walked away. There was literally no one in the gallery, except for a bored looking individual in the corner that I later found out was the artist. Because of this lack luster and unfriendly attitude of the gallery owner, a potential client, walked out the door.

So, what would a gallery owner with the "IT" factor do during a gallery opening? First, greet the potential customer with a friendly smile, followed by a short informative explanation of what is happening in the gallery is a must! Attitude, the gallery owner must make the potential Collector feel welcome, as well as, impart a sense of excitement over an Artist's new body of work. Communication must be skillful and sensitive to the potential Customer or Collector. Most of all, the gallery owner must listen to the cue's coming from the buyer to determine a course of action in facilitating a sale for the artist. Last but not least, introduction, usually the artist is at the opening of the show, it is common pratice to promote and introduce the Artist. Successful gallery owners adhere to these obvious principles of the “IT” factor. On a final note this type of barbaric behavior is common in galleries, it is an unfortunate attitude for the Artist and Gallery that represents the artwork and the potential buyer.

- Christina De Musée

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