Wednesday, June 27, 2007

Leaving Another Gallery

Rooftop, 2007, Oil on Panel, 8x10

Now that I have gotten my work back, I can talk a bit about another gallery that I also just left. That makes three this last year.

This was a good example of a gallery that I probably should have left some time ago, based on sales, but didn't because they were so great to work with in every other way. I was invited to participate in several themed shows which were a welcome challenge, they paid on time, and they were extremely supportive of their artists. They sold a few pieces of mine here and there, but really never more than that. They had a good reputation however, so I felt that having them on my resume outweighed any sales issues. When a new contract came last spring, I signed it, deciding it was worthwhile to stay on with them at least for another year.

Then a few weeks ago I received a letter from the owner. The retail gallery space would be closing and the owner was planning to work as an art consultant, placing art in public spaces, offices, cafes, etc. I felt pretty sure that my sales would not improve in those venues and the logistics of dealing with delivery and pick up would be very difficult for me to handle (they are located nearly a day's drive away and they don't ship work back). I reluctantly told the owner that I had decided not continue on with her and she was absolutely lovely about it (probably relieved-another non selling artist leaves!) and went out of her way to get my work back to me on a very inconvenient day.

I feel good about all of this and even kind of relieved that it's turned out this way. I am extremely relieved I was able to get my work back without incident, as I sure have heard some horror stories about that! But I am disappointed that my work didn't go over very well in their community even though I don't really take that personally. Sometimes my work really clicks somewhere and sometimes it just doesn't.


CecilyK said...

That must be frustrating, but it sounds like you made the right choice for yourself and your career!

drips of paint said...

Hi Tracy,

I must say this is a better artist blog that I have come across because I enjoy both the painting as well as your writing.

It is late and I have only read about 3 posts of yours, when I have a chance I'll read on.

Sounded like leaving the gallery is more a blessing to you, good luck in your search for next anvenue.


Tracy Helgeson said...

Cecily, Thanks and I do feel that leaving these galleries is the right thing for me. Sometimes navigating through it all is pretty difficult however.

Hi Tim, So glad you are enjoying my (excessive) ramblings, and good luck getting through anything in the archives! I can be very wordy!

Stacey Peterson said...

It's good to hear you talk about leaving galleries. I'm only with one right now and they did a great job last year (sold over 25 paintings and paid every 2 weeks on the dot), but now they've moved and aren't selling, and even worse they're taking FOREVER to pay when they do sell (and don't get me started about how they don't even notify when paintings have sold unless I call and ask). I'm looking for new galleries, but it just seems tough to leave a gallery that was such a good fit at one time. Glad to hear your thoughts on the matter - sometimes it's just time to move forward!