Galleries are great and you should definitely support your local galleries, however, they aren’t always the best judge of new talent.
What’s that you say? Of course they are? They know what to look for and can weed out the bad art?
Yes, they may know better than you and can weed out the bad art, but who weeds out the bad galleries?
Just because art is in a gallery doesn’t mean it should be on your wall and vice versa.
A gallery is just one person’s opinion on what is good. The gallery owner.
Yeah, they probably have a better bet of picking out good art, but sometimes, not so much.
Galleries want what they think they can sell. They don’t always want to take risks. They want something that is already established and considered a safe bet.
You may miss a really great artist the gallery turned down. Look at all the great artists who were rejected by galleries of their day: Van Gogh, Manet, Monet.
Thanks to the internet you have a wide range of places to find artists you love. You can go to art fairs and small, local coffee shops and support two businesses at once.
Ask your friends and family if they know any artists. I’m sure they do and you may even like their work.
I found my favorite oil painting in a closed off room of a house I rented. Another favorite was bought from one of my teacher’s at a show in the gallery of another teacher. Some smaller favorites were bought because I joined an artist group on Facebook for a medium I don’t even use.
Google local artists.
Just look around. Galleries are great, but there’s plenty of art out there. Especially for the beginning collector.
I just read some advice to go see your local bands because all the greats were local at some point. The same is true for artists.
With that in mind, make sure the artist is at least ethical and doesn’t undersell any gallery they are in.