How to Meet New People

You’re new to the area.

You’d like to get to know the lay of the land – the powers that be in the local arts community. What do you do? Do you just call them up? Introduce yourself at an opening?

Be Inspired by Her Story

Photographer E. Brady Robinson got to know arts leaders in the Washington, D.C. area by initiating a project to photograph their desks.

Desks as Portraits: An Inside Look at the DC Art World documents the working spaces of DC-area curators, collectors, writers, art critics, museum directors, artists, and tastemakers.

E. Brady Robinson, Andrea Pollan's Desk

©2011 E. Brady Robinson, Andrea Pollan's Desk. Pollan is the founder/director of Curator's Office.

It turns out that it’s pretty interesting to be a voyeur and gaze into these offices. You want to see the technology, the paper, and the art on the walls.

This is nice for us, but Brady was the real winner. What a networking opportunity! All of the people she has met!

Not only did this project help Brady get to know the movers and shakers in her new location, the Washington Post picked up on the story and gave her a nice feature.

Don’t copy, but be inspired by this story.

What can you begin that will introduce your name to the arts leaders in your area?

 

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6 comments to How to Meet New People

  • I threw an “art salon” dinner and invited them to come and chat about a particular subject i chose.

    • Cindy: Did they know about the subject ahead of time? Can we have an example?

      • Yes, they did Alyson. I was new to the area and had not personally met any of them. I believe the question was something like “what does your art say about you, your personality, your likes, your style? Do you think it is critical to stay withing a specific genre or style to be successful? So what is your personal definition of success?” I emailed it out, let us all get friendly for a while (pouring the wine), served dinner and then started the conversation. It was not important for this evening to stay on topic, just needed to have an ice-breaker as such. We made certain that among the 10 guests we had a variety of mediums (poetry, landscape, potter, book maker, writer etc). It was great fun and really opened a lot of new avenues of personal and professional friendships for me.

  • Hi Alyson,
    I was an artist/Army wife for sixteen years and virtually had to start over building my reputation with each move. I always found the best and quickest way to get to know
    the art movers and shakers was to volunteer in the local artists’ guilds. If you are
    on the board, you will not only meet with the heads of area museums and exhibit spaces, but you will meet other artists and discover the ones who are on your wavelength. I often got to select judges and assist them during local competitions and these were gallery owners or directors of Arts Councils.