An Opportunity to Curate

"Smoke 11" by Mark Elverson is featured in Brenda Hope Zappitell's curated collection on UGallery.

I just had the opportunity to curate a collection for UGallery as a guest curator. This is not my first experience with this — I was asked by one of my galleries to do this just a couple months ago for a newsletter. It was the experience with that newsletter that prompted me to contact UGallery about curating a collection for them. I had written an article about online galleries for Professional Artist magazine and had become very familiar with UGallery.

Zappitell's curated collection on UGallery
Zappitell’s curated collection on UGallery

The process of curating was quite enjoyable, and I would love to get the opportunity to do it again. It is very different to look at others’ work and decide what is of interest to you when you are an artist yourself. It also gave me an appreciation for what the galleries may go through that represent me when they have to make decisions about what artists and artwork to have on their roster.

When choosing the artist’s work from UGallery, I did not pick by a theme, as I had done with the previous newsletter for the gallery that represented me. I decided that because UGallery had such a diverse group of artists, I wanted to try to choose art from all different genres and mediums to have more of a variety. The artists were chosen based on a cohesiveness of their work that appealed to me — I looked at the group of each artist’s work as a whole, and did not decide to include an artist based on one particular work that intrigued me. There were several artists with UGallery that I was familiar with, and some of them ended up in the collection, but I did not choose them because I knew them. But because I was familiar with their work before putting together this collection that may have influenced me without me even realizing it. This is an important point for those of you trying to get your work shown in the art world.

For me as an artist, I love the opportunity to do different art-related things besides paint. I think it helps me grow in the studio ultimately, but I also just love to get the opportunity to use other areas of my brain, such as writing this blog and articles for Professional Artist, doing artist talks, teaching workshops, or even all the business and marketing stuff that goes into being a professional artist.

It is important for artists to get their name out there in any way they can and to view every opportunity as one that will not only make them grow, but create a connection that may advance their work in some way in the art world. You really never know what helps, so it is important to be open to all possibilities.

Check out my UGallery collection here. I really enjoyed the process of putting it together!