Saturday, January 8, 2011

How much does it cost to have an exhibition?

When you have never had an exhibition before, it is hard to know what costs your need to consider and how much. Most artists will have the same basic needs, but it is the details that will differ and make your exhibition more or less expensive. Things to consider when working out a budget include;
  • the size of the exhibition 
    • how many pieces?
    • what type of medium
  • Consider the cost of materials
  • venue cost. Are you hiring an artist run space, a commerical gallery or a public gallery, is it a cafe/resturant show etc? All these different types extremely differ in hire fees from low cost and affordable to rediculas. 
  • How long will the exhibition go for. A typical time frame could be 4wks. Any shorter and it makes for alot of time and money to be spent on such a short timeframe, any longer and you pay alot more.
  •  Are you having a luanch? Is so what kind of catering are you having? Or many people do you expect? Find out how much the cafe/resturant/gallery cater per head. Are you paying for alcohol or providing a complimentary drink on arrival. Is there a service fee involved at thye catering venue?
  • Consider the cost for a graphic designer if necessary to produce the invitation, cost of printing and the cost for postage
  • Are you going to get professional photos done?
  • Are you getting any other materials printed such as a catalgue or price list? 
  • Don't forget to consider your time -the Artist's labour, and any other people providing services and need to be paid. Consider applying for a grant or getting sponser or donations. 
Download the above summary in a table with example costs in the Exhibitions Costs Example Document.  

Note: This information was based on a small exhibition, 12 paintings, held at an artist run space, with a luanch.

Now that you have a general idea on what your costs are to hold an exhibition, see here how to work it out in an Exhibition Budget example

* The green highlighted area is what is to be funded.

Table Notes:

Artist fees: worked on approximately 6hrs per week x 40 weeks x $20/hr = $4800

Art Space Volunteer Fees: Estimate approximately 23hrs spent per exhibition period @ $20/hr = $460 round to $500

Materials: I estimate $1000 as I went online and added stock to an art materials shopping cart including paints, brushes and canvases. The figure neared $1000.

Invitations: I estimate approximately $350 from obtaining online quotes

Hire Fee: This is a standard flat rate, each art space will differ, this price is VERY cheap. Artist Run Initiatives (ARIs) tend to be low cost. Galleries can charge up to a few thousand. Research your options.

Exhibition Launch Catering: Again, this figure will differ on number of heads being catered, the type of food, if alcohol is provided (in this example it is not), if there is a function room fee etc. In this case, a local cafĂ© restaurant opened afterhours to cater for the launch. 

Of course your exhibition costs and requirements will differ depending on your needs, this information is just a guide to give you an example of the costs entailed in a small exhibition.  

1 comment:

  1. Hey chrissy :) I would love to take part in your next exhibition. Could you post further dates in the near future? My wife is a true art lover and she follows your blog every week. Too bad she doesn't have what it takes to comment on her own, lol.


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