Do you find the idea of visiting a gallery intimidating? Do you settle for window shopping instead of boldly walking through the front door? Fear not, here is your gallery visitor intervention. We hope by sharing these inside tips, we can alleviate some of the mystery and trepidation.

  1. Don’t be afraid! Galleries are not used car lots. Yes, galleries want to sell art, but gallery owners know that people have to see the art and fall in love with it, before they’ll buy. Browsers are always welcome!
  2. Most galleries offer layaway plans, so take that second look and if you can’t live without it, consider paying for it over a period of time.
  3. Galleries will sometimes offer a discount for payment with cash or check rather than credit. It pays to ask!
  4. Artists will often agree to redo a piece based on your preferences, so if you see a piece you love, but would like something changed, you may be able to have it customized. Again, don’t hesitate to ask.
  5. If you love an artist’s style and would love to have them create a completely new piece using your idea or subject, be sure to inquire. Many artists love commissions.
  6. If you have been thinking about that piece you saw several months ago, and don’t see it in the gallery now, be sure to ask. Galleries rotate work, so it might be in the stacks. In any case, the gallery will gladly contact the artist and try to locate the piece.
  7. Art is an investment. Be sure to ask about receiving Certificates of Authenticity. You never know when that emerging artist will become a “Picasso”.
  8. Many galleries operate on a limited schedule, but most will see clients by appointment. If you just have to have that piece now, be sure to call and ask for an appointment. We know very few galleries that would refuse a sale, even at an off time.
  9. Gallerists and artists love to talk about “the process”. Take advantage of their knowledge and willingness to share. You’ll quickly become gallery savvy and a confident buyer.
  10. Gallery representation implies that the artist will sell their work for the same price as the gallery. Generally speaking, buying through a gallery should at the very least get you the same deal, maybe even better. If the gallery offers you a discount, it usually comes from their side of the commission, so shop the gallery!
  11. Many galleries do allow picture-taking, although it’s best to ask. This can be helpful, especially if it’s a piece you are considering or know someone who might. Also, many galleries have a system set up that allow clients to take a piece “on loan” for a few days so you can live with it before making a final decision.
  12. Gallerists are problem solvers. Take advantage of their interior design expertise. They can offer the best solutions for placement, display, or installation of your art—or know people who can!

Well now you know, galleries really are user-friendly. Stop by ours or any of your other favorites. Remember, we want you to like us!

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