You live in a cabin off the grid. You make inspired and original works of art. But you don't have a website, you don't know how to write a grant proposal, and you don't know how to begin to get gallery showings. Enter Denver's Artwork Network, an online, and real life, marketing service for artists across the globe. Their motto: creating opportunities for art.
Artwork Network markets its member-artists' works locally, nationally, and internationally to art patrons, collectors, corporations, townships, restaurants, and residences. Simply put, creating opportunities for art involves pairing artists with potential buyers. They have a sophisticated web presence as well as a physical gallery located in the heart of Denver's Artdistrict on Santa Fe.
The gallery is, in fact, one of the nicest exhibition spaces in Denver, boasting more than 3,000 square feet, and hosting art openings, wedding receptions, and live art events of all kinds throughout the year, not to mention hosting thousands of art lovers every first Friday of every month for the last six years.
Artwork Network also manages art rotations in venues throughout the Denver. Members come from all over the country and internationally, looking to market their artwork both online and in person to willing buyers. And while the company has dabbled with art rotations and galleries in other markets, they are primarily Denver focused for the time being. The company retains consultants to help answer all of their members' art marketing questions, such as how to price their work.
"I've been part of it since January, and just updated it with some of my abstracts. I think it's a good avenue," said Silverthorne member artist Christina Davis. "It hasn't proven for me financially yet, but it's a great idea.
Alan Kircher founded the company in 2004 as a way to help small business people - namely independent artists -- become successful. Their mission is to create connections that result in artistic and economic success for all parties, and to allow art to be appreciated by a wider audience.
Kircher entered the art world with approximately 15 years experience in business, marketing, and sales, with a background in the banking industry helping artists and other small businesses secure funding and manage their finances. For him, Artwork Network is an extension of that work.
"Artists no longer have to be a part of big city art scene to get their work in front of the right audience," said Artwork Network creative director Jessica Bradley. "In a day when most consumers are buying online, it's just as important -- or more so -- for artists to market themselves online." Bradley graduated from the Art Institute of Colorado and has been with the company since 2007.
"It just made sense," continued Davis. "The Internet is part of everybody's life now. I think what convinced me is the amount of people that would be looking at my paintings. I'm still very enthusiastic and they're great about staying connected and giving suggestions."
"I'd love to dispel the myth that everyone working in the art business is a snob," Bradley said. "We pride ourselves on being friendly and easy to approach, both for artists and art buyers." In this way, Artwork Network has taken one of the other major hurdles out of the gallery and art marketing process, that of intimidation. Marketing artwork online in this way tends to level the playing field, making each member artist's work as accessible as the next. Or, in Kircher's words, removing the mystery and the elitism from the art buying process.
For more information, to purchase artwork, or to become an artist member, visit www.artworknetwork.com.