Q&A with a Curator: What Artists Need to Know About Getting into Galleries

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Have you ever wondered how to get your fine art photography into a gallery show?

Many fine art photographers are mystified by the process of being shown in a gallery.

I know when I first began my journey into fine art, the prospect of having my work hang in a gallery felt a little daunting.

That’s why in this post we are going straight to the source by asking a gallery curator the biggest question artists have about being shown:

Where does one start?

What galleries are a right fit?

Are there galleries that even take submissions from artists?

These were just some of the questions that held me back for a long time.

Eventually, however, I began dipping my toes into the gallery world by submitting to various group shows.

That exposure, those connections and that experience eventually led me to being able to have a solo show.

But, as with many things in my career, each step took a very long time and there was a learning curve with each.

However a little over a year ago I was introduced to the work of Fine Art Photographer Samantha Goss of Sleeping Awake Photography.

I was impressed by the fact that she was doing something that few artists accomplish:

She was acting as both artist and curator in her career.

 Samantha Goss of Sleeping Awake Photography being interviewed about her work.

Samantha Goss of Sleeping Awake Photography being interviewed about her work.

In following both her fine art and curatorial work, I saw that a show that she had originally curated for a gallery space in Orlando, Florida had also been picked up to be shown internationally with its first stop in Paris, France.

 the "Beneath the Surface" Group Exhibition at  Gallery 29  in Orlando, FL hosted and curated by Goss.

the "Beneath the Surface" Group Exhibition at Gallery 29 in Orlando, FL hosted and curated by Goss.

Impressed, I decided to continue to keep tabs on her.

Earlier this year she put out another call for entry for the second show she was curating and I decided to submit.

We ended up striking up a conversation about our work, shared experiences and my interest in her curatorial experiences.

She very graciously agreed to be interviewed for a Facebook Live Q&A in my group Beneath the Surface because many of the member photographers are mystified by the process of being shown in a gallery.

In this talk you'll hear tips that can help take the learning curve off of your own journey such as:

  • Her biggest tip to artists when applying to gallery shows

  • What a curator like her is looking for in submissions

  • How to submit to the right kinds of galleries

  • The value of an Artist's Statement and how they play into her selection process

  • Her recommendations on how to frame and ship your work

Watch the Q&A below:

If you're interested in joining us for future live Q&A's in this broadcast series, come on over to my Facebook Group "Beneath the Surface".

We go live Thursdays at Noon EST!