RedDot Podcast | Saying Goodbye to a Gallery

A lot of my writing and podcasting is about the process of preparing to present your work to galleries and about how to establish relationships with gallery owners. In today’s podcast I’ll look at what happens when a relationship with a gallery doesn’t work out and how to end the relationship.

 

 

What have you experienced when ending a relationship with a gallery?

Have you had to terminate a relationship with a gallery? Why did you end the relationship? Was ending the relationship difficult or awkward? Share your experiences and advice in the comments below.

About the Author: Jason Horejs

Jason Horejs is the Owner of Xanadu Gallery, author of best selling books "Starving" to Successful & How to Sell Art , publisher of reddotblog.com, and founder of the Art Business Academy. Jason has helped thousands of artists prepare themselves to more effectively market their work, build relationships with galleries and collectors, and turn their artistic passion into a viable business.

8 Comments

  1. I have been painting for a long time. My reason has nothing to do with wanting fame, money, friends, or anything else for that matter. I paint for the same reason that I breathe. Eat, drink, and perform other essential activities and functions. chanit.com
    My website is quite old. Yet you can easily see what I am about.

  2. I do very much wish for you to see at least some of my work. I am a passionate painter.
    My mediums of choice are Oil and Watercolor. My website is quite old. I post many paintings on Facebook, as well as on Instagram. I would appreciate any words you care to offer and be grateful for whatever input you have.

  3. It is hard to say good by to a gallery that has sold your work. The most important thing when you leave is to be diplomatic and not say things you would later regret. Be kind. The Art World is small. When I left a gallery I said that my prices had gone up and I felt it was time for me to move to another gallery as sales had dropped in their gallery. I did not leave that gallery until I had another. I wished them well, warmly thanked them for selling my work and believing in me, and said it had been a pleasure. I asked them to please keep me on the gallery mailing list. I did feel that the owner had gotten less interested in running the gallery, and in about two years the gallery closed.

  4. I ended what had been a successful relationship with a gallery when I discovered that a vulnerable stone sculpture that was not currently on display had been stored precariously on a shelf under a bench. It was resting in a way that could allow it to slide onto the floor, and it was stored with a variety of objects that could easily scratch it. Meanwhile, the form-fitting crate I had brought it in was stored in a completely different place that was difficult to reach (that is why they hadn’t bothered to store the sculpture properly). As well, we discovere another crate was stored outside and had gotten wet. I still like the gallery and the owner, but don’t want the risk of exhibiting there.

  5. I have said goodbye to two galleries. Both were unable to survive economically for different reasons. I was sad to lose them. I still use the portable display walls the first one gave me to save them from the landfill. A regret I have is not asking for a testimonial from the sweet people who sold my work for years.

  6. I ended a relationship with a gallery that I’d been with for a few years when the owner stopped paying in a timely manner. At one point, 4 paintings had sold and I hadn’t received a payment for them – and it had been 8 months. I had to be insistent on payment and kept bugging the owner, and that was super uncomfortable. The day I left I felt so relieved.

  7. Hi Jason, you may remember me as we did one of your artist interviews together a few months ago. I just listened to your podcast #17. The timing was amazing. I actually have an appointment this morning with one of my gallery owners. I have been in this gallery that is 30 minutes from where I live for about ten years. It is in a well known resort town on the beach. Last year the previous owners retired and sold the gallery to a young man from AZ. He is somewhat new to the gallery business, but when he bought the gallery he contacted each of the artists and met with us. He sounded like he was going to go out to make it successful and try some more updated strategies. They actually sold quite a few paintings for me in the last six months that he has been the owner. The problem is mainly that he doesn’t pay, not just me but all the artists. It takes 3-5 months to get paid, and that seems to be only after we contact him over and over. Our contract says 30 days. There really are no other galleries in the area, sadly, and I like having representation there.

    Last night I typed up a termination of our contract with a list of the inventory with the idea of having it ready to pick up my work if I felt that was the way to go. After listening to your podcast I plan to type up a cover letter explaining why I am leaving, and if I decide to stay after our meeting what changes I would like to see happen. I prayed about what to do in this situation,(as in 20 years I have never had to do this before) and then I listened to your podcast this morning and it was exactly what I needed to hear. That’s what I meant about perfect timing. Possibly I need to look for a gallery out of the area. It may be time. I tend to be very loyal, and it is great not to have to ship everything. I am in 7 galleries within driving distance, including this one. Any advice. Thank you! Sheryl

  8. That the reporting artist was being notably slow-paid by that gallery, wasn’t being pro-actively told if there had been sales, was owed money, and expressed concern about non-payment if they terminated the arrangement, is all too much of a red flag. I know of at least one notorious gallery in a great market, no longer in existence. As an artist, I would not want the continuing negative impact of those concerns, and I observed the negative impact on a fellow artist, who sought legal advice from me. As a gallerist, the legal and/or ethical principle that the artist’s share for a sold work is in trust for the artist, promotes paying promptly and not having the funds exposed to other uses. A gallery that is deliberately funding itself that way?

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