36 Hours of Angst
Does that look like a nice booth shot? I thought so. It shows some of my recent abstract paintings I had on display at the Indian Market in Denver last Friday, Saturday and Sunday.
So where did I go wrong? I was ITCHING for an indoor art show to come along. The 30th annual Indian Market was just the ticket I thought. I had NEVER BEEN to the Indian Market before, mind you, but another artist recommended it.
Great crowds, lots of print, radio and TV advertising. I cannot blame the sponsor for not getting the word out. The venue was an enormous indoor space with very easy loading and unloading - it was heaven.
The fact that is was indoors meant I didn't have to worry about wind, rain, heat, cold - the usual bugaboos of an outdoor show.
So, why didn't I sell a ton of work?
I got my first inkling of trouble brewing when I read the list of participating artists. I do several outdoor shows a year, and it seems I personally know, or know of, at least half the artists present.
At this show I knew ONE.
It was billed as the Indian Market and Southwest Showcase. I was juried in with my geologic abstracts which have a strong southwest appeal to them.
But the crowds of people were NOT there to buy $2000 paintings, however.
They WERE buying incredible handmade silver and turquoise jewelry, beautiful leather handbags, clothing with silver trim and lots of fringes, pottery decorated with traditional Indian designs, and paintings (yes!) of Indians, pueblos, tee pees, horses and the old West.
If my name had been Carol Soaring Eagle, I might even have done better. They were not looking to buy geologic abstracts from a Swede.
Of course, I cannot blame the crowd. I should have done my homework. I should have listened to a few artists who were guarded in their assessment of the show.
If you're selling contemporary fine art - make sure it's at a fine art show. I met some fantastic fellow artists and we LAUGHED for three days straight. As a matter of fact, the worse the sales were, the more we laughed.
Posted by Carol Nelson