Wednesday, June 8, 2011

I have an Idea-- An Art Experiment if you will...

In the early 1950s de Kooning

Wouldn't this be kind of funny!

Ok so...  You find a piece of artwork on the net, lets say an older Pollock ( a not so recognizable piece of work) or maybe an Willem de Kooning of discreet nature.  Then print it out on canvas and take it into every gallery you know, say it is your work and that you want to be a part of that gallery.  I bet you good money, or three hot cookies you don't get in anywhere.  As a matter of perception you will be declined because they will not know whose work it is, and they will say your work is not a fit for their gallery.  I think it would be interesting.  I may do it and video tape it to see what happens.  Would you not laugh your ass off! 

Would you be surprised if I didn't get in anywhere if I did this?

What do you think?

What would it say about the art world...


  1. I`m pretty sure you are right and they would reject the artwork. Most galleries look at the name more than they look at the artwork.

  2. I think you're right, but not necessarily for the reasons you might expect (sure there would be some who say "this painting sucks" to themselves, but there are other factors). People get rejected from galleries for several reasons- which I learned while working for them:

    1- Sometimes, the work really just isn't fit for the gallery. If the types of paintings they show are more crisp and clean, they won't want anything that even close to resembles a De Kooning. The fact is that galleries are a business with clients. They cater to people with specific tastes, and if someone did come to them with a real de Kooning, it would probably be more worth their while to take a finders fee and point you to a dealer who DOES deal in that. Time is money, and dealers don't want to spend time searching for people outside the scope of their clientele if they don't have to.

    2- Even if it's not a known Pollock or De Kooning, it might still look too much like a "knock off" for them to be interested. A gallery I worked for did a trial run with an abstract artist whose work was very modernist. They couldn't sell his work on account of a stigma he ended up with- "the poor man's Rothko." Believe me when I tell you dealers would rather avoid that early. I'm not saying that a lot of contemporary art isn't homogenized in a frustrating way, but dipping into abstract expressionism is like trying to get a record deal as a Pink Floyd tribute band. You might get some inquiries but nothing serious.

    The next and final thing on this specific issue is quality. These people look at art all day every day- they cna tell when something has been printed on canvas vs painted right onto it. They get frustrated by it, and could reject it on that premise alone.

    I certainly appreciate the commentary you're making here, but I just wanted to show that there are more angles to this than you might have originally suspected, and I'm not sure it would prove or disprove anything about the art market as we know it today.

  3. In terms of name over work, don't forget- artist who get famous don't start that way. That's why they call it "getting famous"

  4. Thanks for your input. I agree that there are so many more components, I just think the premise itself is interesting. As for work selling, its kind of interesting, I had a pretty successful online gallery a while back and really anything I was willing to put up sold. I think in these times curators try to gauge what they think will sell thereby copying each other with the tone of their collections. With the right push any work can be sold.

  5. Hate to say it but the truth is galleries are business not a miracle venue to help artist selflessly. Whether it is the name, the work, a combo roa gut feeling, if they pay the rent thay have the right to choose. A rather inperfect system, gallery frustration should not be a deterrant BUT an inspiration to explore any of the many other venues and new possibilities out there. We cxan not seat and wait to be discoverd, expect galleries to work for us cause we thing we are great nor go around angry cause art aint as easy as people wish it was.
    On the vidoe idea... plan it well and you could have a really fun docudramam in your hands. Just don't take sides cause there is n fair way to do so.