Though I cannot speak for every gallery, The Kiernan Gallery works hard to get the word out about our exhibitions. Beyond the standard mailing list notifications, we strive to bring people into our online gallery through networking and developing relationships with art buyers and other gallerists. In order to make yourself stand out and get your work noticed, here are some ideas on how to promote your work in a group exhibition:
The Kiernan Gallery does not make exhibition show cards because we cannot make a show card to feature every artist in an exhibition, nor do we not want to select a single image to represent the show at the expense of the other exhibitors. Making your own show card with your own image and information is a fantastic way to bring attention to your piece in the show.
As we all know, the costs of exhibiting work can add up. Spending the additional money for printed show cards is unnecessary. An electronic show card spreads word of your image in the exhibition just as well. Because they are electronic, there is no money wasted on printing and mailing, and they can be sent instantly. I prefer them to paper cards, as do many other gallerists. When making a card, I recommend using the same template provided from a printing service such as overnightprints.com for size, trim area, and so forth. This makes printing easy if you decide to spring for physical cards. The back of the card should have:
- Your name
- Your website (if you have one)
- The title of the exhibition (which appears on the gallery's website)
- The name of the gallery
- The gallery's address, hours, and website
- You may wish to say “juried by…” so that you are not making it seem like a solo exhibition.
- The Dates of the exhibition
- The Date of the opening or closing reception
- The title of the image you have used for your card
This is an example for our upcoming Portfolio Showcase:
If you are exhibiting a certain body of work on a fairly regular basis, printing business cards featuring one of the images is a far less expensive alternative to tangible show cards. Sending a few business cards along with your work to the gallery is always a good idea. Putting an image you are showing on the cards associates you with that image, even when people might not remember your name.
Social media can obviously be useful in promotion. However many artists have begun to find that easy-to-use sharing functions can create some ethical and legal issues. Uses and implications of social media are certainly important, so we will discuss them in-depth in another post.
In the end, being proactive and taking initiative is what really counts. Self-promotion and networking are the keys to furthering your career. So put yourself out there, submit, and promote.