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How to deal with art gallery rejection

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How to deal with art gallery rejection

Postby hungariancontessa » Thu Apr 29, 2010 7:08 pm

Wow! all I have to say sometimes life can be rough! I submitted two paintings for an open jury show at local gallery. Talking about putting salt in an open wound. I am fairly good at rejection but not at being strung along thinking that they will take my work.
I gave the gallery 20.00, and drove close to 45 min. to get to the gallery and for what?
She announced less than 24 hours before the show in an email whom would be in the show...a long list of people. I scrolled down waiting to see my name...nothing!
Now what do I do? Yes, I was upset, teary eyed, and second guessing my artistic talents! Being in a fragile artistic state wrote back to the gallery, when do I pick my pieces up since my work is not in the show? I guess I wear my heart on my sleeve sometimes.
I will put this in the experience pile and move on. :roll:
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Spring Dew.jpg
I didn't make the show
Spring Dew.jpg (97.11 KiB)
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Postby Menolly » Thu Apr 29, 2010 7:18 pm

Sorry to hear that, but don't take it too badly... sometimes it isn't the skill involved that decides what gets accepted, but the subject, the medium, or the personal interests of the jurors .(I feel art jurors are like movie critics - even if the goal is to be objective, a photographer is going to respond more favorably to photographs than paintings, and a lover of Duchamp is going to prefer that style over, say, neo-classicism.) Keep trying, your work is great!
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Thank you !

Postby hungariancontessa » Thu Apr 29, 2010 7:26 pm

Thank you so much, your kind words really helped! I guess I really wanted this one to happen. Thank you for the compliments on my work it is greatly appreciated.

Best to you,
H.C. :D
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Postby Menolly » Thu Apr 29, 2010 7:30 pm

No problem. If you don't mind me asking, what does 'hungarian contessa' mean? (I guess I should just be asking what 'contessa' means, really.)
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Postby hungariancontessa » Thu Apr 29, 2010 7:51 pm

Not a problem. My mother was Austrian/Hungarian decent, and my great grandfather was a nobleman from Austria.
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Postby Erika Takacs » Fri Apr 30, 2010 8:33 am

Sorry to hear that. I find the term "open juried" show misleading. "Open" usually means all artworks accepted. So how can open be juried. :shock:
I'd say read your form carefully, and if you find it misleading, demand your money back. At juried shows usually they will tell you the date when you'll be notified, so I find this gallery's dealings very unprofessional.

Other than that, always be prepared to be rejected at juried shows, that's just the way it is. It doesn't mean your work is not good, just isn't the proper fit for that particular juror's vision. If the juried show has a theme, you really need to make sure your work fits well.

Whenever, wherever I get rejected, I just say to myself, gotta get better, gotta work harder. :D And THAT really does help. So no need for tears, it's just another lesson learned. Get that
ush and paint up a storm!
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Open juried

Postby pehiatt » Fri Apr 30, 2010 9:30 am

Open juried

Open can sometimes refer to no restrictions as to who can submit work. Open shows are sometimes juried to a small extent only to limit the number of entries.


Juried shows with entry fees are quite common. If you do a lot of them and I do it can get quite expensive. $20 to $50 or 10$ per piece is normal.

I find juried shows helpful;first if you get in its a chance to exhibit your work and possibly make a sale or two. Rejection, on the other hand, invites self reflection. I always look closely at what did get accepted and ask myself. How does my work compare and what can I do to improve my chances at be accepted? Sometimes it takes several years of trying to get in.

I have made it into shows that other artist say are impossible to get in.

Rejection does not mean your work is bad. It just does not fit the venue or meet the jury's requirements.

Check out the paper I posted on ASC

http://docs.google.com/fileview?id=0B-ZAPfGmFIxHYTE1ZjU3NDEtYjE5My00ZjNlLThiOWQtZmI5MWQ3YzhlOTdj&hl=en

I have a good collection of rejection letters, at lease from those galleries that take the time to send one. Many just post a list of accepted work. One I enter regularly uses a telephone message listed accepted work that is grouped artist name by alphabetically.

Hang in there. If you don't play you can't win.

Good luck!
Last edited by pehiatt on Fri Apr 30, 2010 9:52 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Postby hungariancontessa » Fri Apr 30, 2010 9:50 am

Thank you, Pehiatt, Erika, Menolly for the cheer up talks. And you all have such wonderful, and insightful advise.
To be honest, this was my first physical, walk into a gallery submittal. I guess the defeat temporarily stung a little. And you all are absolutely right, I will get the wind back in my sails, and start plugging away again. I just want to get my pieces back with out a confrontation, the gallery owner is not the most friendliest person! :D
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Postby Menolly » Fri Apr 30, 2010 1:11 pm

Well, hey, if the owner gave you less than a day's notice that your piece was not accepted, and did not tell you a specific time to pick up non-accepted work, and you drive all the way out there to pick your work up in person, I'd say you have the right to be confrontational with HIM! :twisted: That's been the rule in our family - if we get terrible service from a business, LOUDLY regaling the room with our reasons for dissatisfaction often moves things along rather quickly.
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Postby hungariancontessa » Fri Apr 30, 2010 2:22 pm

Yes, I agree with that theory!
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Postby johnwalkeasy » Sat May 01, 2010 8:03 pm

Rejection of ones work can be a tring thing. But one must look at a history of rejection. The 1st. time Babe Ruth step to bat. He stuck out. Evis Presly was told to keep driving a truck. Clint Eastwood was truned down for every part he tried for. Bill Cinton was laughted at. A atlanta newspaper on the front page read, Jimmy Carter is running for what!!! Take a rejection for what it is worth. Nothing.
Perfection is what drives an artist.
The inability to achieve perfection is what creates a work of art.
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http://steelbronze.vpweb.com
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Postby hungariancontessa » Sun May 02, 2010 12:09 pm

You're right johnwalkeasy! I let it get the best of me, and felt intimated because it was my first non online submittal. It is nothing!
On a daily basis, I don't have much contact with other artists so these forums really help. Who knows, maybe I can use this to show the gallery other works.
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dont feel so bad.

Postby chrisvalour » Tue May 11, 2010 3:05 pm

Don't feel so bad. I sent a submission in to a 2 week long city wide art exhibition. My stuff was apparently exactly what they were looking for and they even extended the deadline by a week for me so I could get my stuff to them on time. I drove an hour and a half each way to drop off my pieces..... Never heard from them again and wasn't listed in the list of participating artists. So I have no clue if my stuff was shown or not, and if so where, because I never found out if I was able to get a couple of the really expensive tickets to the event for free.

Now I'm working on a way to pick up my paintings... Which I wouldn't really care about if I hadn't already sold three of the four.

I am sure that it was just some type of mix-up by a volunteer or something, and they didn't purposely give me the run around.... but it has really made me think twice about where I submit my stuff and where I trust to just drop off my art.
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Postby hungariancontessa » Tue May 11, 2010 10:03 pm

Wow! That's unbelievable. I don't know it really makes you wonder about how the galleries are run. Congratulations on selling the three pieces.
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Postby arlenemurals » Wed May 12, 2010 2:44 pm

I get rejected all the time, for years really. Its hard not to take it personally..A person can start to second guess themselves... Do i really suck? often crosses my mind.. Then I enter a show and win a ribbon and all is right with the world. Your art is precisely that and if you enjoy what you paint juried shows can not take that away from you. It is a matter of preference not indicative of your talent! Keep trying and do not give up.. I am not!
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Postby DrSirDrawsALot » Sat May 15, 2010 3:44 pm

It's OK. I know it can be hard to deal with, but there will be other galleries who will accept your work. First tries aren't always the charm and you can always try again and don't let it discourage you or think your work isn't good (which it totally is).
-Crystal J.
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