Top ways to sell your art outside of a gallery



Top ways to sell your art outside of a gallery

Getting your art into a gallery can be tricky at best, especially if you are a new face in the crowds of artists applying to exhibit. The process can take time and you might never be chosen to sell your art.

While this can be highly disappointing, you should not lose heart. There are ways to sell your art outside of a gallery, whether you create African art, abstract sculptures or even digital prints. Below are just some of the ways you can sell your art without having to use a gallery.


Display your art in coffee shops or other venues

Rather than trying in vain to find a gallery willing to display and sell your art, you can approach a local coffee shop, restaurant or even office building to display your work and offer it for sale. Of course, you will have to offer them a percentage of the money you make in order to use their venue, but the goal here is not to sell out but to gain exposure.

If it is done well enough, any venue can be turned into an art “gallery”, even the smallest cafe. You should include business cards with your contact details, as well as your social media handles so that people who are interested in finding more of your work can contact you easily. Be sure that your art is already framed and finished for the venues, as this will make it easier for them to display it on their walls.


Speak to interior designers and art dealers

If you know someone who works in the interior design business, you should use this to your advantage as soon as possible. Many interior designers are on the hunt for stunning, unique artworks for their clients which could be any from homeowners, hospitals, office blocks and even corporations.

Contact an art dealer regarding your work, and they will put you in touch with an interior designer who needs a piece for a client. Art dealers offer a safe and secure way to sell your art, ensuring that you are paid the money on time and in full. Whether there is a new bank looking for quirky African art to fill their walls or a homeowner looking for a sculpture to tie their living room together, an art dealer will have a ready list of interior designers who will snap up your art in a heartbeat.


Start an online shop

Exhibiting in galleries is fantastic and exciting, but they can limit your audience to the local people who come to view your art. To remedy this lack of exposure, you could create an online store to sell your art. Having an online store is crucial to all artists who want to stay relevant and remain connected to the evolving art world.

If you are not a coder or have no idea where to start with an online store, you can use simple sites such as Shopify or Squarespace to create your online shop. These sites offer simple, elegant templates specifically for artists who want to showcase their work, start a portfolio and sell their wares online. You might have to pay a monthly or yearly fee, so be sure you can afford everything before you make a commitment and start building your store.


Start getting social

Without gallery representation, you need to get creative about how to reach your audience and sell your art. In comes social media, with studies showing that more and more art buyers are turning to social media platforms to find art to add to their collection.

It is best to use one or two outlets to advertise your work, and because you need your platform to be visual, the two best platforms for artists tend to be Facebook and Instagram. You can post a photograph of your work to Instagram and share it easily and directly to your Facebook account. Or you can upload professional prints to your Facebook page with a link to your Instagram account.


Offer commissions

There are sites where you can offer your skills as an artist to people who are looking for a unique African art piece, a personalised portrait of their cat or even a sculpture of their new car. Offering commissions on these sites will allow you to gain exposure and test your skills with new techniques and methods.

However, before you offer commissions, you will need to ask yourself whether you have the time and dedication to make this work as a business venture. Are you able to finish the work on time? Do you work well with clients or do you prefer creative freedom? Does the project fit well with your artistic goals? Once you have answered these types of questions, you will be ready to take on that high-paying commission.