Make Your Own Art Venue–Anywhere!

The Museum of Bad Art (yes, it really exists!) is one of my
favorite examples of making art an event. Case in point:

Taking Art to the People
Staff and volunteers parade through a shopping mall carrying
art (unwanted even  by MOBA!) and blowing on kazoos. It all ended in an auction
that benefited the Salvation Army.

MOBA has also held Gallery in the Woods. At this event,
everyone grabbed a painting and took them to a dedicated location in the
forest. Paintings were nailed to the trunks of trees for an entirely new
gallery experience.

Why not?

Is there any place that’s off-limits for showing your art?
What are the limits you have?

Maybe your ideas aren’t as extreme as the above, but you’ve
just come up with a brilliant idea to tap into your niche market or to build
raving fans. Tell us about them!

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6 comments to Make Your Own Art Venue–Anywhere!

  • Kren Bennett

    Along the lines of an open house in your own home, there’s the possibility of having one in someone else’s. My sister-in-law, for whom I am doing a large commissioned piece for her new home, has offered to host a cocktail party so that her friends and acquaintances can meet me and view my work. I will definitely take her up on this offer, as she is a quintessential hostess, has a gorgeous home and friends who, she says, would like my work and have the money to buy it.

  • Last Christmas I approached a realtor about doing an art show/open house in an empty house in a good neighborhood. She was thrilled with the unusual marketing opportunity. We had 5 artists and the cost per artist was about $50. With a little persuasion, we got discounted postcard printing, free catering and a free website. We mailed 1200 postcards and had a good turnout. Expect to do ALL of the organizing yourself though! A neighboring city has started a co-op program with the owners of empty downtown commercial property. Artists sign up for a spot and do installations in the empty storefronts.

  • Joseph Murray

    I think that artists have to take the good with the bad . Exposure is the key ingredient to success . We are all carrying a brand and we have to establish our brand in the marketplace . So whether it is attendig a art festival, soliciting coffee houses, galleries, or whatever . That is the name of the game ! All of us have our share of failures but it seems we remember the successes more than the failures as time goes by . I certainly have attended my share of flops but if 10 people remember seeing my images on each occasion then I have accomplished something . I don’t think the marketing aspect of Art ever ends . If we believe our art is good then we owe it to the world to show it continuously and often . As Alyson says,”Shameles Self Promotion!”

  • Sandra Meyer

    I had the opportunity to invite classmates to our coop art gallery when we had our reunion last week. It was listed on our web site so no mailings or advertising were necessary. I bought cookies and made iced coffee and tea. Only about 25 people showed up but I sold 5 originals and some prints, cards, etc. It was a great day!

  • Has anyone here ever participated in a Homeless Gallery? You can read about the concept here: From the site: “The Homeless Gallery finds a benefactor who will loan us a suitable space for a week. The word goes out – photographers bring their work and hang it – we have an opening party – the general public comes to view the work – we have a closing party …. and so the cycle continues.” They seem to hold exhibitions in empty warehouses, car parking stations, halls, etc – wherever they can find a suitable space. Exhibitors take it in turns to keep watch over the exhibition. Sounds fun!

  • Great idea, Darren! I think this is kind of what Marianne is doing with the Gypsy Gallery in Boise. She didn’t post it here, but sent me an email. They’re online at I recall back in the early 90s a similar concept in Oklahoma City called the Phantom Gallery. It just appeared in different, empty places.