When you’re online, it can often feel like there is just too much information. Whether it leaves you meticulously researching the news or mindlessly scrolling through social media content, it usually leads to the same place: feeling overwhelmed. Instagram, newsletters, emails, advertisements… as an online user, all of these add up to demand your attention.
From an art gallery’s point of view, it can feel tough to stand out in this boisterous crowd. You may find yourself stressing over unique and innovative ways to capture your audience; however, going back to the drawing board, we can find a new trend rising in the art world, and it’s quite simple: being personal.
It’s only natural that we, as humans, would tune out something that doesn’t apply to us. Maybe you always click on a friend’s Instagram story, but you steer clear of a brand that doesn’t appeal to you. But what if your friend worked for that brand? Maybe then you’d be interested in keeping up with their content, because you share a personal connection with them.
This concept of forming a personal bond with others can, and should, apply to art galleries. By talking to your audience directly and creating personal content that resonates with your own story, you can market your art gallery while building meaningful connections with your community. After all, art tells a story, so your gallery should too!
To help you begin telling your story in a personal way and attracting like-minded visitors to your gallery, we’ve compiled three tips for jumping right in. First up is a piece of content that fits perfectly in the art world and always centres around people: the artist statement.
1. The Artist Statement
An artist statement can be a powerful practice for bringing your gallery’s art to life. Giving visitors a window into why and how art is made can intrigue outsiders and when done well, it is full of storytelling potential.
The artist statement enhances a gallery experience by extrapolating the main theme or medium and showcasing the artist’s personal connection to the artwork. This can create a bridge for your audience, taking them behind the body of work you are exhibiting or selling. These personal introductions to an art show also help make sure that each artist fits within your gallery’s unique mission and values.
An example of a great artist statement is that of Duane Keiser:
“My subject matter tends to be those fragmentary passages that reside within the mundane – the in-between spaces of our lives that we see but often do not notice. For me, these paintings are about the pleasure of seeing; of being cognizant of the world around me and pushing to find an alchemy between the paint, my subject and the moment. I view each piece as being part of a single, ongoing work.”
For more great examples of artist statements visit: https://www.artdex.com/what-are-great-examples-of-artist-statements/
From Keiser’s statement, we get a sense of the ebb and flow of her work, and appreciate that she wants us to think about seeing the interesting in the mundane – a unique take that draws us into her artwork.
Another example of how you can use artist statements to personalise your content is to feature them as digital profiles or standalone pieces of content.
St Ives-based gallery Anima Mundi, for instance, do an excellent job highlighting each of their artists alongside their work under the Artists section:
A blog is another effective way of creating long-form content that attracts a wider audience to your website or gallery itself. Whilst social media can feel limiting in how you communicate the many facets of your gallery, a blog provides an opportunity to discuss in length your artwork, gallery events, artists, news, opinions about the art world and more. It offers such a scope that blog storytelling may be described as an art form in and of itself.
Using your blog to delve behind the scenes of your gallery, by featuring your curator’s expertise or how you set up an exhibition, for example, can not only appeal to a wider audience but also be easily repurposed onto social media as a reel, Tweet, Instagram image – whichever makes sense with your brand.
This NYC-based art gallery illustrates how a blog can allow you to extrapolate recurring themes and ideas that are appearing in your artwork or even those that you are noticing in the wider art world.
3. Social media
Did your gallery start as a late-night conversation between two best friends? Or maybe it caters to showcasing young, emerging artists? Social media can be a wonderfully personal way to tell people how it all started and what your gallery specialises in.
People want to see your art but they also want to know the heart behind it. Taking visitors into the artist’s mind frame, telling them the story of your show’s creations or latest collection can really help humanise and contextualise your gallery.
Here are some tips for personalising your social media content:
- Make sure you have a consistent tone across social channels, one that is more fun and human than a corporate account – this can really help tell your story.
- Let your personality shine, which can strengthen the bond you have with your audience.
- Create proactive content that responds to topical news, as long as it’s relevant to you and your story.
Ultimately, to stand out from the crowd and attract an audience that will engage with your content and follow your journey online, you have to show them why you, personally, think your story is special. Any reason that you think makes your gallery unique can then be shared with the world in these three formats to encourage visitors to form a bond with your narrative so far.
How to Begin Using Your Story to Create a Great Content Strategy
Using your story to personalise your art gallery and connect with your audience is an effective strategy to gain positive engagement with your brand, which can then translate to clicks, tickets or sign-ups.
Experimenting with some of these approaches above to solidify your art gallery’s identity on social media as unique, relevant, and authentic is a fantastic way to make your content stand out. If you have a clear purpose and speak genuinely about your story, you can begin joining wider conversations on social media whilst promoting and expanding your gallery’s network.
To help you come up with fresh content ideas that will resonate with your community, we’ve put together a short guide below. Simply follow the arrows, beginning at the top, to build a list of topics that will spark meaningful conversations online.