Sandy Miller on tue 18 oct 05
Just an observation here.......... I attended a gallery opening last Friday at a large gallery in a small town. The gallery is also a frame shop. Owners, very knowledgeable on 2D, framing and jewelery. They have a wonderful reputation in their community and operate 2 thriving galleries. They have quite a bit of American made craft, they attend the Rosen show in Philly and the ACC show in Baltimore. They love meeting the artists and are knowledgeable about the work they do carry. They are eager to learn about work they would like to carry. These folks send out press releases and are eager to pass on their knowledge to the buying public. They "get it".
I posted the Mug Show here on clayart and many of y'all sent beautiful work. Thank you! Pots were beautifully displayed and when I arrived Friday morning at 10:30 am the gallery was packed! So many people were there at 10 am I was amazed and they continued to come throughout the day, I stayed until 4:30 pm. Not one artist sent any information on their work! No bio, no information on what kind of ceramic work they sent, no care cards ............a box with an inventory sheet and one artist sent an envelope with their name and address for a check to be sent back........no stamp. Made me laugh! I gave a crash course to the owners and I talked to so many folks who were very interested in the process. I looked at the cash register and there was a line; 4 people, one man was holding 4 mugs. I saw 12 of my mugs walking out the door, I sold most of what I sent. On the way home I got to thinking about this ( a 2 hour drive) What makes me buy a mug, I have alot of mugs. I know
the potter, I like the potter, I love the mug. I know what it takes to make the mug hanging in my collection......... I am an educated buyer. I don't buy jewelery, I buy pottery. I thought about the folks buying mugs today..........they wanted to know about the process and the gallery owners want to tell them about it but need the information to do so. There were gorgeous transparent porcelain shino cups and tumblers there priced at $50 each and a teapot for $500............through out the day I heard.....Why? why are there dents in the cup, why are there spots in the cup, why are they so expensive.....and on and on.
The Gallery owners called yesterday and said they had an equally successful weekend and will be holding the Mug Show annually.
Respect the holy trinity...............The Gallery, the Customer and the Artist. We all need to work together. Give the gallery and customer what they need to sell your work. OK I am off to drink out of my Nick Joerling mug that I absolutely love and cherish .........and he made me make better pots after a workshop I attended one snowy weekend in Indiana.........ahhhhh.