January 25th, 2008

baby pony

talking shop

the relationship between a gallery and an artist is not something you often hear about, which is unfortunate really, because i think a lot of artists would benefit from knowing about this delicate balance of ownership, trust, loyalty and legality. for the artist, it's a fine line between feeling protected and being controlled. for the gallerist, it's largely about business and stature....their success hinges on finding artists who possess the most salability, charisma, etc. but they also have to be concerned about maintaining a high level of visibility and positive standing within the art community.

my time with crussell fine arts came to an abrupt and bitter end last night. but in my mind it was over long ago. they managed to sell a few of my pieces, which was nice, but i felt torn as to whether i should stay or go. i was going through the motions, not fully satisfied, fulfilling my 6 month contract (which ran its course in december) and was fully prepared to move on. it's unfortunate that an ugly confrontation brought the subject of my leaving to the fore, but sometimes the band-aid must be ripped off in order to truly make that change.

i feel fortunate that CFA believed in me, but right now the liberation of being beholden to no one is a much sweeter reward. i think many artists are so starving for recognition that they accept less than they deserve or cower to the gallery machine in order to get their supposed 'big break,' that somehow being associated with a gallery will put them in the big leagues and catapult them to instant stardom.

well, being 'represented' isn't necessarily a panacea. a lot of factors come into play when gallerists and artists decide to dance with each other. personalities, egos and temperaments must gel, and even THAT doesn't guarantee success. it's like any other relationship, there's a courtship, a marriage of sorts, and sadly, sometimes divorce.