There comes the moment in the life of an artist dedicated to photography in which he will need to show his work to others in a physical space and in a sample created for that purpose. There is little bibliography about it and generally the theme is inserted in some chapter of a book of museography. This post can help the photographers who want to take on this new dimension in their careers.
The exhibitions matter to advance in the artistic race. There are many reasons to expose the photographs themselves, or of a collective. First of all, it is an important step in an artist’s career and a need to show work and share it with the public. Of course, today, with social media, this has been greatly facilitated. A few years ago, there were numerous amateur photographers who could never show their work to anyone except a small group of relatives and friends. The photographer could spend 40 years taking photos without anyone knowing them and without going any further.
However, sharing photography in a physical space, the possibility of converting the work into an object is, in this digital age, a fundamental experience for the photographic creator.
Now, for every artist, it matters the number of expositions he has made, but this is an essential parameter along with the following ones;
How many expositions have you made?
Which have been collective and which one are individual?
What other artists do you usually exhibit?
In what institutions?
In which countries/regions?
All this impacts, for starters, on the economic valuation of the artist. It is a strangely misleading and perniciously economic criterion, but that is how the art market works and that is something that neither I nor you can change sooner or more easily. So for those who want to become a famous artist will have to expose through exhibitions.
Many artist do it to obtain scholarships and grants and everything that means private or governmental funds to dedicate themselves to the sublime task of taking photographs without having to distract in the other ignoble tasks which is another reason to make an exhibition.
Exhibition also help you to sell your work. Selling your photographs during the exhibition is one of the answers to that question that all photographers have ever made which is ‘Can I live on photography?’
With an exhibition of your work, you can also achieve social prestige. The diffusion that can be achieved with an exhibition also matters in the marketing of the artist. Nor should you forget that you can organize an exhibition to other photographers and, eventually, generate a reputation as a curator in the art world.