On my facebook newsstream the other day a post appeared that surprised the heck out of me. It was an opinion/info gathering request on the subject of pay-to-play or rental space galleries. What??
The Gallery at 11 Pleasant, now in its second season after enjoying nothing but positive feedback and results, may also have facilitated a new mindset in some heretofore close-minded folks.
Remember all the posts about Art Collector Maine and their innovative business plan? Most of them were negative (at least those I saw). I did lend a bit of support, though as a former member of ACM, I don't know how much weight it carried. That being said, I have all the respect in the world for Jack Leonardi and his colleagues. They seem to have weathered that little storm very well, and I am glad they did. I believe they offer artists a unique opportunity here in Maine. Some can afford it, some can't. So what? Some can afford expensive frames, some can't. Some can afford to enter many juried shows, some can't. The list goes on and on. Just like every other avenue of pursuing success, the road to selling your art is based on what you do to market yourself. Therefore, those that can afford more are usually ahead of the game.
So back to the post on facebook asking artists' opinions about alternative galleries. This was centered around the south coastal area of Maine. I have heard no more about it, but I'd love to know what the responses looked like. However it turns out, I wish our friends in that area the best of luck and the most open of minds.