There was a time when artist would not exhibit with craftpersons; it had to be a pure art Gallery,
The first time I saw a gallery exhibiting crafts, now referred to as -fine art or fine craft- and pure art together was in the eighties. I wonder how Picasso’s ceramics was classified.
It was the Alex Peck Gallery in Burlington Ontario; it was a godsend for me because I am a sculptor and ceramic artist, so I was able to exhibit both areas of my work in one place.
Nowadays the practice of exhibiting both fine craft and pure art is common, I guess it makes economic sense
Let me share an experience I had with the owner of the Alex Peck Gallery. The gallery was an excellent gallery for artists and craftsmen, first she was very selective, and if she was showing your work you could not exhibit within a certain radius of her Gallery.
I only spent six months a year in Canada ( -summers of course-) and I would leave some of my ceramics with an agent to market for me in my absence. I warned him about the Alex Peck rule.
On one of my return trips I got a telephone call from the Alex Peck gallery owner-“Mr. Devonish I love your work and it sells well, but I have packed it all up, so please come and collect it”.
I hurried over and asked what was the reason; She explained that I had broken her rule. And told me where she saw the work.
The long and short of the Story, I bought my own work from the craft shop in order to continue exhibiting at the Alex Peck Gallery.
I have not been back to Canada since 1988, But I sometimes wonder what happened to the Alex Peck Gallery, She was a wonderful lady, maturing in age at that time.
Some of my most successful exhibitions were in large department stores in Toronto-Canada, Trinidad and Barbados. Fortunately the management allowed the arrangement of a special gallery setting.
Many people who rarely frequent art galleries bought art
In Barbados most of the clientele were Tourist , Expats with homes on the Island and some well to do Bajans. During the first exhibition in Barbados I met several locals who saw my work in the homes of the rich and famous, wealthy, and some middle class Bajans. They expressed admiration for the work, but never thought they could afford to purchase; the prices were always affordable.
The exhibitions created a new clientele, so much so that my last exhibition in Barbados before leaving for Anguilla was at the Queens Park Gallery, a government sponsored gallery situated in the capital..
More than 50% of the exhibits were sold to locals on the first day. Unfortunately I left Barbados at the wrong time.