First rate art is in danger of being left behind in this new age
of the global Internet highway. The World Wide Web is like
Walmart or Home Depot coming to town. Art galleries as
they now exist, are going to become the Mom and Pop
version of selling art.
Chances are if you are an established artist, and look for
your medium or subject matter on the Web, some very
web-savvy artist will show up, sometimes repeatedly on the
first two or three pages of a search engine and your name is
no where to be found.
This can change, but established artists and the galleries
that represent them need to start thinking differently about
their approach to the Internet. And galleries need to help
every artist they represent have their own website. This will
make a revolutionary difference in how first rate art is
represented, because right now really good contemporary
art is hard to find on the Web, and because of this fact, really
good contemporary art is in danger of becoming irrelevant
or worse, obsolete.
Every artist needs his or her own website, and every artist
needs to get his or her own website now.
There are several myths I would like to dispel.
1) Websites cost a fortune.
Websites do not have to cost a fortune. There are lots of
good people involved with the Web who don't have a huge
overhead who are good at designing websites.
Good websites for artists can be designed for $500 or less.
You can get a domain name for under $10 and have it
hosted for under $100 a year. This is one of the best
investments in your career you will ever make.
You also do not have to pay a fortune to get your website on
search engines. For a presence on the Web, you need
patience, information and knowledge (more on this on Art,
Artists and the Web: Part 4).
2) My gallery is in charge of marketing and I don't need a
website in my own name.
Every artist needs a website with a domain name that
includes his or her name--"www. yourname.com" or "www.
yourname artist.com." What artists do not need is a website
that includes the gallery's name--"www.
Websites need to be easy to remember and Web visitors
are going to pay a lot more attention to an artist that has
their own domain name. Web visitors usually skip over
websites that are hosted by galleries and pay almost no
attention to artist's pages on gallery sites.
3) If I have my own web page, then the gallery or galleries
that represent me won't be able to control the direction that
the gallery would like to go in.
The artist and gallery can work together in creating the
artist's website. However, it can't feel as if the gallery is
holding the artist hostage. There is nothing worse than
finding an artist you really like on the Web, seeing a couple
of picture and a link to the gallery. Web visitors never go
The artist's website can be an excellent promotional tool for
the gallery. There is no reason why an artist's website
cannot promote both the gallery and the artist.
If the gallery is concerned about an artist having an email
address of his or her own, there is an easy solution. The
person who sends the email gets an automatic reply saying
their message has been received. The same email
message can be forwarded to both the artist and the gallery,
and together they can decide how the email could be
Established artists need to become conscious of the new
way people are viewing and experiencing art. There are
literally billions of people out there who don't know that you
or your art exists. They associate your subject or medium
with artists who show up on search engines. They don't
care about what gallery you may be associated with, they
care about who shows up on the Web. If you don't start
showing up on the Web very soon, not only will no one know
who you are, they won't even care.
But, great art doesn't have to be left behind. Artists and the
galleries that represent them can join the new global
Internet highway, have fun enjoying the ride and be part of
the new global art revolution. Start now and start right away.
? Mary Baker 2005
Mary Baker is a contemporary realist painter, whose studio
is in Newburyport, Massachusetts. This New England city,
north of Boston, has been the inspiration for the artist's
realistic oil paintings. Mary Baker is a professional artist and
has shown in New York art galleries.
You can visit Mary at her website, Mary Baker Art, at http://www.marybakerart.com, see her beautiful paintings and read her articles
on a variety of subjects including, Art, Artists and Money,
Creativity, Tips on Breaking the Creative Block, Why Buy
Original Art and the four part series on Art, Artists, and the
A list of articles can be found on her Site Map and
Mary's paintings can be seen on every page of Mary Baker