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07/10/2007

Artist Co-op & Studio Barters For Nearly Anything

Gallagher Studios and Creative Center, an artist cooperative in Ocean Shores (WA), has local artists pitching in with the day-to-day operation of the gallery in exchange for lower commission rates, greater promotion, and discounted supplies.

Owners Tina and Sam Gallagher say the gallery�s co-op nature will make it easier for artists, photographers and sculptors, to do their own promotion and prepare for shows. Their commission rates will be 20% for volunteers and 30% for people who have no role in the gallery. Most galleries, according to them, charge between 40% and 50%. Tina says she wants to make money off her own paintings and not rob other artists blind with commission fees.

Volunteer artists will also lend a hand during the poetry readings and kid�s classes that are planned as weekly events. The kid�s classes and book readings are Gallagher�s attempt to get children inside a place where they�re surrounded by art, places which aren�t usually known for being kid-friendly.

However, they primarily want other artists to use the galleries as a means of exposure that wouldn�t be available otherwise. They have an open-door policy for artists or anyone with an interest in selling their art.

Tina admits she may have to use a cash register one day. But for now, the Gallaghers are more interested in bartering to complete the gallery. �We are willing to barter for anything right now,� Sam remarked. �This is not a cash-up-front place. If someone comes in and says that they�d like a particular painting for their living room and don�t have much money, but have a really great computer desk...it�ll be sold right then.�

They give credit to their landlord for getting them started by providing carpeting and knocking out a window for more natural light.


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