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How to Behave at a Gallery

With increasing wealth, leisure time, and opportunities for employment, more original art is available to the masses. But that's no excuse to act like a goon in a gallery.


  • Step 1: Silence your cell phone Before entering the building, turn off your cell phone or set it to vibrate.
  • Step 2: Keep kids close If you have children along, remind them not to touch anything and keep them close to you.
  • Step 3: Don’t be loud Do not be loud inside or call to a friend across the room.
  • Step 4: Don’t clog traffic Upon entering a gallery, scan the space as you move through the door, considering how you want to approach the artwork while not clogging up traffic.
  • Step 5: Stand aside When not directly viewing a work, step aside and let others see it.
  • TIP: Look where you’re going—avoid knocking over any priceless pieces!
  • Step 6: Tip on complimentary food or drinks If there are complimentary food and beverages available, feel free to partake, but tip if you’re able.
  • Step 7: Don’t gawk Don’t get caught gawking too much at other gallery-goers, no matter how pretty, handsome, or outlandish they may be.
  • Step 8: Keep criticism to yourself If there's a remote possibility the artist is present, refrain from making any critical comments.
  • Step 9: Don’t say you could do that Never say, 'I could do that.' Chance are you can’t.
  • Step 10: Ask questions Should you have any questions, feel free to direct them to the artist or gallery owner. If you get a chance to meet them, thank them for having the show.
  • FACT: Many fine art galleries have frame shops on-site. Since they’re framing the really expensive stuff, they attract some of the best framers in the business.

You Will Need

  • A sense of decorum
  • And common courtesy

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