Art Gallery
Empty Gallery

by Attila Glazer

Spoiler alert: whether you like it or not, the future is hybrid. Offline and online are like hand-in-hand ways of thinking. It is a must to change your mind if you still think: “we go back to normal”

Think about the fact: Disney launched their first major motion picture online! What about the cinemas? Yes of course we will go back to the comfortable huge seats, eating popcorns and nachos making crazy our neighbour, but don’t forget: almost everything in on the net right in your hand, in your mobile.

Wanna go to visit MOMA? Want to see an interesting opening on an island 10000 kilometres from your home? No travel cost, no crazy parking spot hunting, no worries about a babysitter, no time managing. Only a button: Invite/Join.

Virtual Collections, auctions, education, art fair, exhibitions, events, fundraisings, volunteering online. augmented reality. Even yoga class, birthdays on zoom. Business meetings from your chair wearing a tie, and underwear. Even Purchasing art online

ZOOM is the new google.

Have you ever thought about these?

Pandemic democratized art

What you need is a mobile, internet excess, and creativity. Not spending a fortune organizing an exhibition, if it is not necessary. Of couse known it wont be the same as smelling the paint on the canvas personally. But you have the chance to reach your audience.

Larger audiences will engage with art

People are visiting their laptop reality instead of museums. –don’t fight with them. Invite them for a special event on the net. Give them a cance to know you, your art, your vison. Work on solutions you can catch their interests.

Social distancing forced us to get closer, yes: virtually

Think about how easy to meet online with anyone in the world. But only distance matters. We even meet online with our neighbors almost. You like it or not, that is a tendency. Yes, we can look at it as an opportunity for more dialogue. There are fewer competing distractions. More focus on what you say and hear. Of course in this case we all miss beers in our hands and the view of the river… Bur sometimes concentration is more important, so why not?

More conversations with artists and curators being recorded and shared

 We need to see each other, we need to talk. But with the online opportunity artists are giving studio tours virtually. Meet curators during online courses and other educational or eliminative occasions.

Artists were able to showcase more works since they were not limited to a confined space within the gallery. 

  • Social media becomes the new meeting place, special groups, events

conversations by sharing videos, streaming live events, and using hashtags like #MuseumFromHome

artists get creative. Illustrators read their books over Instagram Live. Artists connected with patrons over hashtags. Makers set up flash sales, led studio tours, and recorded time-lapse videos showcasing their process.

You are not alone, as an artist. Others “do the same”

Galleries, academic institutions, hospitals, airports, open studios, public art programs all brought their artworks online. Some examples from the article: How COVID Accelerated the Evolution of the Art World,

  • Davidson College’s Van Every Smith Galleries brought their 2020 fall semester exhibit online so that students, faculty, alumni and their community could continue to engage with their programming. 
  • Airports were deserted in 2020. Instead of cancelling exhibits, the Minneapolis-St.Paul International Airport art program (MSP) brought their rotating exhibitions online
  • The Albin Polasek Museum and Sculpture Gardens quickly pivoted in April and made their annual fundraiser, the Winter Park Paint Out, available online. 
    • The Online sales trend
  • Before COVID we saw a trend of increased online sales due to innovations in technology, increased comfort levels around online transactions, and the creation of democratic platforms like Artsy and Artwork Archive’s Discovery platform, which gives art aficionados the freedom to peruse artists by price point, geography, medium, etc..
  • Now, online sales increase because of the direct need for galleries, dealers, artists and auction houses to bring their works online while their doors are closed. Their website has become their new showroom.
  • This transition to online also established more transparency in the art market. Many galleries are now showing their prices. 
    • New ways to meat the artist
  • The art market continues to expand online, notably with sales at all price points and drawing first-time auction buyers. For instance, with the economic challenges of 2020, we saw artists pivoting and making smaller and more affordable works. 
  • Before COVID, artists and collectors connected at art fairs, studio visits and gallery events. But for the emerging artists without gallery representation and invitations to these shows, they were left out. COVID made gallery-hopping, fair-going and studio-visiting not possible. So art buyers had to adapt to new opportunities to discover artists and their works. 
  • These monumental shifts in wealth led to a new collecting class eager to spend and invest their money. But, for this new group, the art world can seem exclusive and out of reach. Virtual exhibitions, online art fairs and online-only auctions have helped to democratize the market making the art world more accessible to new collectors looking for an affordable and accessible entry point.
  • Artwork Archive helps artists, collectors and organizations organize, manage, showcase and sell their artworks.

Will this online trend continue?

The art world is social. Art is a tangible object. There is no replacing the experience of viewing art in person, and that will not change. People want to be around other collectors, curators and experts. The public is hungry for in-person events to learn and patronize the arts, together.  Whether it’s attending an arts performance online, or purchasing an artwork from a website, these habits we’ve solidified in 2020 will stick around for the future. Online has proven to have its benefits. It provides access whether that is for attendance or purchase. The online platform is now proven. People feel comfortable with buying art online (up to a certain value).

What we need to rebuild the art world is Enthusiasm.

Inspirational powers from artist continued to make art during the pandemic, administrators continued to share it, and enthusiasts who continued to consume and purchase it.

Article was written by Attila Glazer ( based on the article: How COVID Accelerated the Evolution of the Art World,