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gallery commission on home sales (was: gallery question)

updated mon 24 sep 01


Janet Kaiser on sun 23 sep 01

It depends as much on your conscience as any agreement
made with or presumed by the gallery, Lisa. There are
ethical principles and gallery conventions involved
here, which may be different where you live and
exhibit. To save any misunderstanding with your agent
(the gallery) I would advise talking to them and
clearing the question up to your mutual satisfaction.

It may help you to know that our artists/makers pay us
10% to 20% commission on direct home sales, which
honestly would not have happened, if the client had not
seen their work in our gallery in the first place
and/or been given the contact details.

We take an increased 20% to 30% on commissions which we
handle from start to finish, usually without the artist
and the client ever meeting.

The from-to percentage depends on the size of the
commission and we have wavered commission completely on
sales in the past (viz. artists/makers in financial
difficulties). That is our pejorative. One artist we
regularly exhibit always pays us our full gallery
percentage (30%) and even a little extra on a large
sale. Much of their success has been through
high-profile exposure here, so they want us to be able
to continue the good work!

We would also expect the direct studio/workshop sale to
be the same price as a similar work on exhibition in
the gallery. The artist retains the difference between
the reduced gallery % commission and the usual rate
(effectively between 0% and 20%) - a compensation for
the extra time and effort involved in dealing with a
client, so effectively doing part of our job.

Any artists or makers selling direct to clients
acquired through us, who do not pay us the agreed
commission stipulated in our consignment agreement, do
not get a second opportunity of exhibiting with us.
Galleries are not stupid and word soon gets around
which artists/makers are good, honest partners and
which not to touch with a barge-pole.

Janet Kaiser
The Chapel of Art . Capel Celfyddyd
Criccieth LL52 0EA, GB-Wales Tel: (01766) 523570