‘Bad Advice or How Does an Artist become Successful?’ by Jackie Milad

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Artists, please, never double book yourself in Baltimore! Believe it or not this has happened to me more than once, where artists will agree to be in a show in my gallery and somehow I hear through the grapevine they are showing in another gallery elsewhere in the city at the same time–even with an opening reception on the same night!

I think many young artists get overzealous and agree to be in more than one show at the same time— in the same town. This is a huge no-no, I don’t care what anyone says. One, it is a conflict of interest–plain and simple. Two, it makes promotion confusing and difficult. Three, its not fair to your career and it makes the artist seem unprofessional. If you find yourself in this predicament you should always honor the first gallery that approached you–no matter if the second gallery is bigger and better. What comes around goes around…..

On another topic—-If you are an emerging curator I have a little bit of advise for you—JUST SAY NO TO DIVAS!—no matter who the artist is and where they are in their career, a diva will make your life more than a living hell, and well, its not worth it. Before I officially invite an artist to be a part of a show, I always talk to them on the phone — almost an interview process– just to ensure the artist I want to work with has a pleasant disposition and comes across as trustworthy. I’ve been burned once–and never again.

Jackie Milad is the Curator at the Union Gallery at UMCP

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