One successful way is a cooperative gallery. There is one such
gallery in operation in Prescott, Arizona which is very successful.
Another way that should work is co-op shows.
I agree! I would love to start an artist’s co-op here in Charlotte,
but a “co-op of one” leaves me pretty much in the same spot! I
haven’t had a lot of success locating kindred spirits here in this
city approaching a population of 1 million. I know they must be out
there, but in a city known for its banking and business prowess, the
visual arts community isn’t as vibrant as I would like.
There is an artist’s guild here, with studio spaces and a poor
excuse for a gallery. I can’t imagine anything ever sells from
there… and I don’t think the other artists would enjoy my banging
away, breaking the church-like serenity of the place I’ve found when
I’ve been there. Not to mention they would probably object when I
feel the need to crank up a Metallica CD! I suppose I would have
that problem in most group settings, though!
At a show last year a fellow artist told me that they were able to
start a co-op in his town by buying a vacant building, scheduled for
demolition, from the city for only $1! With the investment of a few
thousand dollars in renovation, they were in business.
How would one go about starting such a venture? Place an
advertisement in the newspaper with the idea and see if I can shake
enough artists out of the trees with interest in participating? I
don’t know that I personally have enough “bandwidth” to handle all
the real estate details, organization, paperwork and such. I think if
I could find three or four other motivated people like me, we might
be able to pull it off.
Ideas or suggestions, anyone?
Sebaste Studio and
Carolina Artisans’ Gallery
Charlotte, NC (USA)