Owning original works of fine art is out of reach for many. As someone whose disposable income always seems to be trailing a step behind the prices of my favorite artists’ works (I’m looking at you, Martin Poole), I’m fortunate to be related to one of them (thanks to years of birthday & Christmas presents, I’ve amassed a nice collection of glass pieces courtesy of my brother).
The brilliance behind a new idea from Ann Welles of Exhibit A Gallery on Market Street is that you can now have such a piece of fine art in your home or office without actually purchasing it. It’s called the Art Try. And as the name suggests – rather than buying a work of art, you’re essentially leasing it for the calendar year – at a fraction of the normal purchase price.
Ann sourced close to forty pieces, from nineteen different artists, to comprise the pool of work from which you can choose. The Art Try opened Thursday night, but it continues until 6:00pm Sunday. Though some pieces have already been spoken for, over half remain available. And while the selection might have dwindled a bit, so too has the price tag for securing a piece for 2016 (from $180 opening night, to $140 Saturday, and $120 Sunday).
If you find something you really like and wish to keep it beyond the one year, your Art Try fee can be applied to the purchase price of the work. If you elect to return your piece, Ann will offer you a $100 credit towards the purchase of any other art (priced over $300) at the gallery this year.
We applaud the creativity on display here – not just of the art pieces themselves – but of the idea behind Art Try. The gallery and the artists involved are putting off higher short-term gains, for a potentially long-term return… and perhaps the forging of relationships with new art consumers. Might other galleries take a cue and try a similar approach with selected works?
It’s also a reminder that in addition to our wonderful museums, we have a large number of art galleries and art-related businesses for a city our size – where you can browse original works across a wide variety of media.
These are all right on Market Street:
- West End Gallery
- Vitrix Glass
- Gustin’s Gallery Goldsmiths
- 60 East Gallery
- Arts Council of the Southern Finger Lakes
- Gallery of Martin A. Poole paintings at Hand+Foot
- Barbara Hall Blumer’s studio and gallery (painting & photography)
- Corning Art & Frame (vintage & contemporary music art and hand made instruments)
Take an opportunity to check out places like these – and even if you can’t afford to make a purchase, spread the word to others about the places and pieces you like.
And stay tuned for more news about a fun art-related social event that’s brewing in Corning!