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Big Art for Big Spaces

Since 2011, I've been fascinated by exploring the simple rectangular page shape, creating dimensional works for the wall that are luminous and textural. These works long to expand in scale and be featured prominently in public spaces, from hotel lobbys to corporate reception areas.

SUNY Geneseo MacVittie Student Union Installation

When I had my first solo show in 2008, Gleason Library at University of Rocheser purchased one of my pieces for their collection. Knowing the work will be seen and appreciated by generations of students and faculty made me realize I want to see my work displayed in spaces where many people can benefit from them.  

SUNY Geneseo CAS purchased three works in 2012 for their newly renovated MacVittie Student Union. It's exciting to think that students are relaxing and socializing in a space where art and design are part of everyday experience.

Here is a close-up of one of the fluttering pages pieces (center in photo above) they purchased:

 Book of the Ancients 3: Remembered House Numbers, 36" x 48", mounted on a stretched canvas frame

 Crumbling Pages Study, 24" x 24" shows a different color palette.  

Now I'm ready to think way bigger, a truly grand scale installation work for a public space where it will have impact on even greater numbers of people. I want these works to inspire and engage people in their every day activities and locations. 

4/27 update -- My answers to Lesson l:

Part 1

What is Marketing for?

Whether on trend or not, I’m happily making one of a kind art works in my studio. No other business idea calls me the way this one does.

My marketing challenge is to identify and connect with people who find my work exciting and compelling. My works are one of a kind soft sculptural works. I have seen over and over again as I expose them to hundred of people each month in my open studios that these works evoke an emotional response in people. Now I want to connect with those who have the desire and the means to purchase them. By being as creative in presenting them to the world as I am in creating them, I hope to stimulate desire and connection that turns into sales.

What are we allowed to touch?

Because I envision and create these works, they are an extension of me. Because I am intrigued by what happens to personal memories and histories over time, I feel they can connect to something important in the people who view them. One-of-a-kind pieces created by an artists’ hand rather than mass-produced have more presence and energy.

It will be me who identifies the prospective audiences for this product, develops the proposals, supporting visual materials and online promotion for these works.

I can choose to just make these and let them pile up around me or make deliberate, thoughtful and creative connections to put them out before people who will love them. I’m not looking for mass or volume like the $19 Skillshare classes; even engaging in several large-scale projects a year will be wonderfully satisfying to me.

We each define our level of success.

What can I as a marketer measure?

I can measure sales, website hits, inquiries, responses to direct mail appeals and commissions, the growth of my newsletter lists and requests for pricing that result from marketing these works.

What promise am I going to make?

I promise to instill my work with power and presence by being true to my voice and passion for creating. I will increase positive perception of it through installing works in public places for people to appreciate and enjoy.

I promise to continue to invest in involving and refining these pieces so they stay fresh, exciting and innovative.

What’s the hard part?

The hard part may be getting people to make a significant financial investment in original art works in an economy that is increasingly purchasing mass-produced objects or no art at all.  It’s possible that wide screen tvs are the new home and business décor. Playing a compelling promotional video in a lobby may be the future of art in public spaces!

Selling original art will also be a highly competitive arena so another challenge will be making my higher-priced work stand out among hundreds of thousands of other potential choices.

Questions that are on my mind:

What needs does buying art fulfill? How can I tap into that need in my work and supporting promotional materials?

What benefits does my work provide that is unique and unlike others? What makes my work stand out?

What motivates purchasers to look for a product like mine? A new build? An expansion? What higher values do an appreciation for art works symbolize?

Where will these prospective corporations go to look for art works or artists? Will they to go galleries, art consultants or search the internet? How can I make my work known to these intermediaries?

I wonder if there is a preference for the works of regional artists? Do these spaces look at art purchases as an investment that will appreciate and seek established artists who already have national or international reputations?

If they're not selecting original art, then what are they choosing instead?

Why?

What information do they need from me to make choosing my work attractive, safe, simple and desirable?

Should I be making trends or following trends?

I do see a trend towards purchasing works that are produced individually by hand rather than mass merchandised, and I can follow that, but I also see the need to create a new trend, one that is about following my work. 

There is a growing emphasis on “American made” that could work to my advantage.

Many companies and public institutions still desire to show some support for the arts; this can be an advantage to a single artist like me that maintains competitive, realistic price points on my work.

Where is the risk?

The risk is that no one will buy my work.

Another risk is that companies will prefer other types of mediums for their art displays, such as oil paintings or large sculptures.

Marketers spend money. Where are you spending the money? What is it for?

I am redesigning my website to be more call to action and telling a story focused.

I am revising and updating my portfolio so I can use pages for both printed and digital presentations.

I am building a contact list to help me cultivate a network of art consultants, curators, and interior designers who will love my work and present it to their clients who are looking for a big statement piece. I already have one in Boston, so I’m not sitting on the bench!

I need to make a budget for advertising and then advertise in online and print publications read by the above. I feel that visibility in the art, architecture and interior design publications these people may read could be helpful.

How should I be spending my time?

I’d like to seek out a first big installation in a high profile location that can be an advertisement for future ones. By making and photographing an installation in a beautiful space, so I can SHOW rather than tell the advantages of my work in public spaces.

Part 2

Jeanne Beck Brand Promise

I promise that a space showcasing one of my dimensional, luminous pieces will provide a powerful visual experience for visitors, customers and staff. A company makes an important statement about their core values when they display innovative, original works in high-traffic areas.

 

 

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