It is no small exaggeration to state that art galleries are the beating, if not trashing, heart of the world of art. They are capable of acting as vessels of communication between the artist and the public, and without the existence of art galleries, the creator’s artworks would not be able to fall into the hands of an audience with much ease. In this way, if one’s understanding of artistic activity is delineated in such a manner, then the vital importance of art galleries is also quite implicit.
The vital role that art galleries play in the art world is often one that is altogether ignored or left to waste-away in the side-lines. Despite this, however, these galleries are the means and the instruments by which the works of various artists are able to make their way to a number of institutions, to some of the greatest of collections, or simply to adorn the houses of those who care for the creators’ work.
A number of roles are associated with art galleries, however not all of them are equally as visible to those who are less inclined to take a closer look. Amongst others, these roles include ones of nurturing and acting as a pillar of support for the artists whose work they exhibit. These are done in various ways, however they include promoting these creators, selling their artworks, providing the management of finances, thorough research, and the publishing of written material.
The promotion of art and its creators is one of the most vital roles of art galleries, able to aid either emerging or already firmly established artists to promote their work and talent to a larger audience. The attendees of such galleries would, in turn, become acquainted with the perspective of the artists through the work being exhibited, and thus enable them to turn inward and thus, potentially, more efficiently plumb or rethink their previously held beliefs regarding their own inner reality.
The power of art galleries also lies in its ability to inspire individuals in their personal quests to create innovative and dynamic work of art of their own. In addition to this, attending an art gallery benefits from the creation of a community of like-minded individuals, as well as the formation of a social network that can be infinitely beneficial in their future. Art galleries also serve as a space for discussion regarding the artworks that are exhibited at any particular moment in time, enabling artists to receive feedback about their work along with any recognition that might be merited by such creators.
“Galleries are the means and the instruments by which the works of various artists are able to make their way to a number of institutions, to some of the greatest of collections, or simply to adorn the houses of those who care for the creators’ work.”
In our contemporary world, images of the artworks of any particular artist in question would be readily available for his or her audience to view through their screens and in the comfort of their own home. This online presence is undoubtedly favourable for the artist in terms of marketing purposes, however it can also be argued that viewing images on a screen ultimately cannot replace the experience of attending a gallery, meeting the artist in person and experiencing a work of art first hand. It is without a doubt that the exhibition itself, in combination with its installation, the manner in which the chosen artworks are displayed in the gallery itself—in order to achieve the kind of aesthetic effect that is originally intended—and the curation techniques that are implemented, all work together to deliver the kind of experience that one cannot achieve by the one provided by the internet alone.
Distance from the art pieces in question, enabled through the barrier of a screen for instance, has the effect of blurring one’s perception of the original work of art. The art exhibitions catered by galleries provide the viewer with an experience that is rather unique and that cannot be replicated by images solely viewed by means of the internet. It is thus for this reason, and the many others listed above, that art galleries can be considered to be of vital importance.