Protecting art from art bloggers with cameras

I see that at least two galleries, both of whom have a significant number of artists with street art or illustration backgrounds, think taking photos in their galleries is a bad thing. What are they afraid of? Do they think any of us is going to go home and upload images to CafePress to sell t-shirts?

James and I encountered a rather hostile reception at Capla Kesting after he took some photos of Travis Lindquist's exhibition, and were told to never return. Didn't they found the Fountain Art Fair, and invite us to attend as press?

Jonathan LeVine Gallery -- who shows Shepard Fairey for heaven's sake! -- now has a policy of no photos too. I learned that from Heart as Arena.

The ultimate fate for galleries that don't allow visitor photography will be obscurity.

Some of the galleries that I photograph have poor to no website of their own (especially galleries tied to educational or civic institutions), and they've come to rely on me and other viewers not only to promote their shows, but also as a lo-fi version of archiving. I think that in the next 5-10 years amateur photographers will be seen as a key segment of the PR economy - shows won't be perceived as having credibility if the general public isn't sharing images of the work in one way or another, and that public commentary will be seen important, right alongside the work of professional critics.

Thank you so much for your insightful thoughts, Marshall. I look forward to following your blog and flickr photos.

it does seem rather Neanderthal for galleries to shoot themselves in the foot in this way. sheesh.

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Published on September 17, 2007 4:50 PM.

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