A Patron is someone who creates possibility for an artist by supporting the work of the artist/s whom they appreciate. During the Renaissance, the Duke of Milan supported daVinci, the Medicis supported Michelangelo among others, including the architect who designed the Duomo in Florence. In modern times Peggy Guggenheim, Charles Saatchi, and Paul Durand-Ruel supported fledgling artists as they built their art careers. Claude Monet said, " Without Durand-Ruel we [impressionists] wouldn't have survived."
Now in the digital age, the opportunities for one to become a patron has expanded. Numerous websites like Patreon are geared for anyone to find and support the artists who are on that platform. Patrons can make the difference in whether or not the artist maintains their studio between sales, or while waiting for the check from the gallery.
Art is a business just like any other. It has a continuous flow of expenditures for supplies, rent for work space, websites and email accounts, contractors for publicity and marketing, and it needs to pay a living wage to the artist. The expenses generally unknown and invisible to the viewer, collector, or buyer are the costs of being in a gallery and in art fairs.
The price one pays for an artwork in a gallery does not all go to the artist. Galleries need to support their businesses too, so they receive anywhere from 30-50% of the sale price of the art. A simple example is an artwork that sells for $200, the gallery gets $100, the artist receives $100. To be in an art fair has many costs associated with it. To participate in the art fair can be in the mid-hundreds to many thousands, and there are the added costs of travel and lodging for the artist. For both the gallery and the art fair, the artist must package, ship, and insure their paintings.
All of which is money laid out prior to making a sale, and for which the artist doesn't see returned unless there is a sale.
There are the outlays simply for applying to shows and exhibitions, residencies and grants which average $35-60 . . . money spent whether or not you are juried in to the show. These are necessities for wooing galleries and creating an exhibition trail that buyers want to see. It is another cost of doing business.
In Gratitude, I am offering various
perks for each level of support . . . high resolution jpegs for printing on your own to various discounts and your choice of paintings. To get the conversation started, tap on the "Tell Me" button below this column to contact me in an email.
As a Patron, you understand the importance of art. For an individual, art can be the light in the dark, the visual where memory is saved, where emotion is felt, and a reminder of the beauty of a place visited. As a social statement, art can change actions and expose truths in ways that are impactful.
Patronage isn't a business, it is a belief in the artist. A belief that extends to the artist as encouragement that their work is meaningful and relevant. That their work is making a difference to the world . . . to an individual who finds comfort in the painting and spreads that contentment to others, and to society who benefits by the various viewpoints creating conversation for change.
Thank you for believing in me and my art.