ARTISTS AND THE ART WORLD SOUNDOFF, created by Spector Projects, is a collection of first-person stories from the art world. “These are experiences that tell who we are, how we got here and what goes on while we do what we do. The art world is not easily defined. From the outside it is foreign and quirky, with ideas that separate it from all else. Inside, the makers, sellers, reviewers, administrators, curators, and academics coexist and work in harmony with completely different agendas. In its hugeness it is ultimately rooted in self-expression and kept alive by the thrust of people who need to create.” New stories are added bimonthly.



From Holland Carter, art critic, New York Times: “Somebody, someday will write a social history of 21st century art fairs, which will also be a history of the art of an era. I hope that history will give a sense of how engulfing the phenomenon is and of the Stockholm syndrome-like mentality it has produced: almost everyone says in private how they hate fairs, but everyone shows up at them, smiling anyway, and hangs out, when they could be visiting studios, or going to offbeat spaces, or taking trips, to Kolkata, say, or Bucharest, or Rio, or Cape Town, where all kinds of series in-touch-with-life work is going on.” Read more


writes art and archtecture critic Joan Altabee.  “It’s time already.  Granted, art by women was ignored for a very long time.  But that story ended and painters like Helen Frankenthaler have been able to say, ‘Looking at my paintings as if they were painted by a woman is superficial, a side issue.’ . . . Even if a historical corrective were needed, it’s just a bad idea to isolate art by gender. . . The separation only reinforces the divide.  This is why the National Museum of Women in the Arts, established in 1987, has always been a terrible idea.”  Read the entire article


Posting prices on your website is a deterrent for art dealers to play hanky panky — charging their clients higher prices than the ones you agreed upon. Beware of art dealers who have a hissy fit about having your prices posted online.

Although some artists worry that posting prices makes a site look too “commercial” — this train of thought is a leftover attitude from the 1990s. Yawn!

I do not recommend posting prices directly next to artwork. I want people to concentrate on your work — not the price. But a price list on a separate web page is very helpful. It also acts as a filter — eliminating people who are really in the poster market and have an unrealistic sense of how much artwork costs. And it will save you precious time, not having to contend with art dealers who have a glass ceiling regarding prices– and only sell artwork for very meager amounts and expect you to conform.

GOOD READS AND SOME HORN TOOTING. is an online publication devoted to Career, Culture, and How-To, as related to art, design, film, stage, and writing. See “How Being a Child Beauty Queen Made Me a Better Artist” by Alexandra Gjurasic. Apart from my own bias – since I am favorably mentioned in the article – Gjurasic’s article is well worth a read.

New Interview with Caroll Michels by Alexandra Gjurastic: “How to Survive and Prosper as an Artist in 2013,”, August 2013.


My clients and colleagues have successfully used the crowd-funding websites Kickstarter, Indieagogo, and USA Artists to fund projects ranging from $2,800 to $32,000 for projects involving travel, tuition, casting sculpture, and the completion of a documentary. For tips about how to participate in crowd-funding read:

Kickstarter Handbook (The): Real-Life Success Stories of Artists, Investor, and Entrepreneurs by Don Steinberg (Quirk Books, 2012). The author interviewed dozens of people who have raised at least $100,000 on Kickstarter. Discusses strategies for an effective campaign as well as the perils and pitfalls. Available September 2012.

Hacking Kickstarter, Indiegogo: How to Raise Big Bucks in 30 Days (Secrets to Running a Successful Crowd Funding Campaign on a Budget) by Patrice William Marks. Amazon Digital Services, 2013. The author identifies readily available and inexpensive but powerful media technology tools to make your project successful.

Crowdfunding for Filmmakers: The Way to a Successful Film Campaign
by John T. Trigonis. Michael Weiss Productions, 2013. Offers practical information, tips, and tactics for launching a successful film campaign by detailing traditional models of fundraising, utilizing today’s technological and social innovations, and augmenting each step with an added personal touch. Examines various ways to meet and exceed one’s crowdfunding goal through chapters ?on team building, audience outreach, and crowdfunder etiquette, along with a section containing case studies from successful film campaigns.

ART DEALERS TRY TO REINVENT THEMSELVES. Excerpts from How to Survive & Prosper as an Artist by Caroll Michels

“Somewhere between the mid-1990s and mid-2000s, art dealers in New York reinvented themselves and changed the title of their occupation to ‘gallerist.’ Although an article in the New York Times* suggests that the advent of this new appellation happened in the mid-2000s, a blog reader who responded to a posting about the Times article said that he first heard the term used in Europe in the mid-1990s.**

“[Today’s] new title arrived with a set of rules regarding who can use the title and who cannot. In an attempt to explain the difference between an art dealer and a gallerist, a gallery owner interviewed in the Times described an art dealer as one who buys and sells art but does not represent artists. The Times article suggested that a gallerist nurtures artists.***

“Nina Pratt, who for many years served as a New York-based art marketing advisor to art dealers and art consultants very accurately observes that many dealer believe the myth that art and business do not mix. ‘Dealers are terrified of being viewed as used-car salesmen. They go to great lengths to dissociate themselves from the ‘business’ aspects of art’.****

“Consequently, in an effort to reinvent themselves and ward off their worst fear, American art dealers gave themselves a new title. Although the new title is pretentious and a less-than-subtle embellishment of the occupation of ‘sales person,’ it can also be interpreted that the ‘ist’ at the end of ‘galler-ist’ symbolically represents yet another encroachment into an ‘art-ist’s’ territory. It can be compared to the 50 percent sales commissions art dealers receive, an implication that they are major contributors to the creation of artwork!”

P.S.: I like to remind artists that art dealers, unlike curators and members of the Association of Professional Art Advisors, do not have to possess any qualifications to sell art. In other words, one can be in prison – with a low status in society – and upon release turn himself or herself into an art dealer. And magically there is a very upward surge in respectability!


*Grace Glueck, “Old Business, New Name: Behold the Gallerist,” New York Times, December 24, 2005. **Dennis Christie, “Dealer vs. Gallerist,” Rubberbandlazer. (accessed April 3, 2008). ***Glueck, op.cit. **** Interview with Nina Pratt, New York, N.Y., 1990.