“It’s not just the art that keeps the gallery going.”A series by Artist Karrie Ross
Learning how to Run A Business: Being a part of a Co-op Gallery we all get to learn about the back-end of running the business. This involves organizing the member participation, making sure the gallery is occupied during business hours, scheduling the solo, group, juried and special monthly shows; general business and bookkeeping and artist payments; organizing call-for-entries submissions; advertising, publicity, promotion… and a lot more. After awhile, everyone just seems to find their place and step-up into what needs to be done. Being part of a community, helping it move along, helps create a positive energy that supports its efforts.
Here are some parts that help make it run smoothly:
- The Galley Book: There is a three-ring binder presented to each new member and includes the members contact list, how to write up a sale, what to do when sitting the gallery, how to secure a solo show, where to send PR notices for each event or solo show …and more.
- Member Participation: each member is given an orientation of how and what to do to be a part of the gallery. And each member just learns to step-up when needed, this helps form the bond of a community that is successful.
- Member Roles: we have a president, treasure and secretary as well as committees that help run the gallery events, such as: monthly shows, show hanging, studio tour, public relations, ad placement, website maintenance and any others that are needed.
- Yahoo! Groups or Google Groups: this is a must have for any group that needs to keep in touch and encourage member participation. This way the group is always on the same page for each event or for sending out call-for-entry notices.
For me, the business end is very important to understand and stepping into participating on a greater scale helps stimulate the energy I’m putting out there, letting the universe know I’m here and ready to participate.
Have you thought about joining a community in your area or starting one? The next benefit I’ll talk about is the Responsibility / Commitment aspect of the co-op gallery.
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