As the dust settles on the most recent global recession the demise of on street galleries has impacted negatively on artists trying to exhibit and sell their work. While 'pop-ups' relieve some of the pressure, the few professional galleries still standing can cater for less than a dozen shows per year.
With the stable of artists of any one gallery likely to be in the lower double digits, thousands of artists from hundreds of locations are left with nowhere to go.
Exhibiting at occasional pop-up group shows is not a practical solution for full time artists either.
The following, referring to 'notable' closures, is mirrored across the globe in small and mid-sized bricks and mortar galleries.
It’s difficult to account for all closures, and galleries don’t all close for the same reasons (pressure from art fairs, for instance, or rising rents, or reduced foot traffic). Nevertheless, the numbers are remarkable. To the best of our count, internationally, in the three years between 2012 and 2015, there were only a handful of notable closures—around 12. By contrast, the following two years (2015 to 2017) have seen 46—with 31 of those happening in the past year alone.
Online art sales, on the other hand, are increasing exponentially. - Online art sales jumped 24% last year, to a high of $3.27 billion. - Artsy
For art buyers, costs can be significantly less as the online gallery's overheads are less, with no rents, rates, electricity bills etc.
For artists, the online route introduces their work to a global audience 24/7 and creates opportunities for higher earnings.
Everyone loves a live event and seeing art in the flesh while engaging in the conversational buzz over a glass of wine is something that we believe should be encouraged and continued, but needs must and the landscape for professional artists has now changed utterly.
We predict that, in the near future, exhibiting online will become the norm 'though hopefully in tandem, if to a lesser degree, with bricks and mortar galleries and pop-up events - Which we will continue to create and support.
Art Spies, a curated platform, was set up with this evolving cultural shift in mind and while, in the subjective realm of curation, we can only cater for our own stable of artists and selected third party artworks, the stable will continue to grow, with the support of art collectors, curators, enthusiasts, gallerists, agents and artists. - Artspies.com