Here are some tips for submitting your work to galleries and to get your submission the attention it deserves. I’ve looked at thousands and thousands of submissions by artists and I’ve noticed some reoccurring issues.
- Read any directions for submitting work. This may seem too obvious to mention but you would be surprised how many times I have looked over incomplete submissions. Directions for submissions are in place to consolidate the interaction and to give the reviewer the best chance for making a good decision for their organization.
- Personalize your submission to each specific gallery. A lot of people buy bulk lists and blast their submission to every nook and cranny on the internet. I received many submissions to our abstract gallery by artists working in figure painting. It was obvious who was familiar with the kind of work that we showed, and those who were not. Make sure you are sending a quality submission and not just spamming gallery owners.
- Don’t demand an answer. People may disagree with me on this one and that is fine. I understand that submitting work can be anxiety provoking and sometimes it seems that hearing a definitive yes or no is priority number one. I think this is being shortsighted. One scenario that submissions fell into was of “not right now.” These were artists whose work I genuinely liked, however given the current lineup of shows and artists the work just wouldn’t fit in the near future. When these artists demanded an answer, I was forced to say “no” when in reality the answer was “not right now.”