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How to Get Your Artwork Shown at a Gallery

For emerging artists, getting artwork in a gallery can seem daunting, but there are many venues available even if you don’t live in a major city.


  • Step 1: Make list of art galleries Make a list of local art galleries including addresses and contact information.
  • Step 2: Visit galleries Visit galleries and ask gallery owners or representatives about portfolio submission requirements.
  • Step 3: Select artwork for portfolio Select artwork for your portfolio. Galleries may require artist portfolios in slide format, as digital files on DVD, or posted online.
  • Step 4: Enter artwork in juried competitions Enter artwork in juried exhibition competitions sponsored by galleries or nonprofit organizations.
  • TIP: Some competitions are scams that exist solely for entry fees. Ask questions before submitting work.
  • Step 5: Join local art organizations Join local art organizations to network with fellow artists as well as art supporters.
  • Step 6: Take college art courses Take art courses at a local college or university. Art classes are prime networking opportunities.
  • Step 7: Form artist cooperative with friends Form an artist cooperative with artist friends and create your own exhibition space along with word-of-mouth buzz about your work.
  • TIP: Select cooperative members carefully. Treat this as a business venture and require members to sign a contract.
  • Step 8: Submit work to online gallery Submit work to an online art gallery or start your own online gallery.
  • FACT: London’s prestigious Saatchi Gallery sponsors an online gallery aimed at providing a venue for emerging artists worldwide.

You Will Need

  • A pen and paper
  • A portfolio
  • Internet access
  • Membership in art organizations
  • Art school
  • Artist friends
  • Exhibition space

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