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A few months ago I wrote an article about MyArtPlot.com, a social networking site for artists. The goal of the founders was to create an equal playing field for artists outside of the galleries, where all kinds of original art could be displayed and bought by the general public.
At the time that I wrote about them, MyArtPlot was still very new and its arts and crafts marketplace wasn’t yet open. Once it was, however, I went back for a second look.
I’ve also included some images of available artwork which are links to larger versions of the work. And, after dropping by MyArtPlot’s About Page, I should say up front that I do think their intentions are good.
I agree with them that art galleries can often appear elitist (and sometimes are elitist), plus, many galleries ignore plenty of good artwork just because it isn’t shocking enough, “deep” enough, or have an already famous signature.
But if you can get past that for a moment, you’ll see that galleries do have an important part in the world of art, when managed properly. In a very real way, art galleries are a lot like Google, placing the answers to your search for art right in front of you by helping the best artists rise to the top.
And no matter how noble the idea behind MyArtPlot is, the economics of it won’t necessarily work any better.
You see, the difficulty for potential art buyers (and sellers) is directly related to MyArtPlot’s ideals: total equality means that good art gets buried amidst all the not-so-great stuff.
The harder it is to find that good art, the less likely those buyers will make a purchase or develop the habit of coming back.
This doesn’t just reflect upon the artists and artwork at MyArtPlot.com—the same thing happens at Imagekind.com, at OriginalArtOnline.com, and at Art.com’s new site, Sistino, which I’ve reviewed in-depth here.
And MyArtPlot isn’t all bad. After doing some digging I found several works that I enjoyed. Of course, you shouldn’t just take my word for it, head on over and check it out for yourself.
I have to say, however, that although I understand MyArtPlot’s ideas for equality, my support still lies firmly with the undiscovered yet talented artists who are getting lost in the internet shuffle.
And until there’s some way for those artists to naturally rise to the top of MyArtPlot’s Marketplace—where their art can be found and purchased—I’m not sure this type of equality is really a good thing for artists after all.
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