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Re: fees

I agree entry fees place a burden upon the entrants, but they do serve several
purposes beyond eliminating the "casual" entrant. In an ideal world everything
would be free but. . . . First, there's the cost of advertising the show, both
for the call for entries and the show itself, including mailing such
advertisements. The Internet has reduced some of this cost but there are still
many out there who don't have access to the 'net. There are the judges (who
usually receive a small honorarium) whose expenses (plane fare, housing, food)
are paid for by the sponsoring organization. If a catalog is involved there
are typesetting, printing, and binding costs. If awards are given there are
similar costs for certificates. Exhibits don't always generate income for the
sponsoring organization: they may get a cut of anything sold at the exhibit,
but in my experience such sales are relatively small. Staff salaries must be
paid for most shows--I certainly wouldn't want to show anywhere there wasn't a
guard on duty. So mounting a show can be an expensive proposition.

Perhaps we are overlooking a major reason for juried shows, namely the
prestige given to those accepted into such shows. I know in the graphic arts
publication in some of the award annuals leads to more/better clients and
client confidence in the award winner. After all s/he has been judged by
his/her peers and has been found superior.

Yes, visual arts shows are expensive to enter, but I don't think it's
comparable to an audition: there is no guarantee that a performer will be seen
or heard on the basis of an audition but acceptance in an art show affords
such a guarantee. The other arts are well sponsored by corporations--perhaps
we could get the tobacco companies to sponsor the Columbia biennale, they are
fond of other art shows--but so far the book arts have received little public
or private moneys.

Excuse me for such a long post.
R. Williams

P.S. By the way, without galleries where would we exhibit? I see it as a
symbiotic (parasitic?) relationship.

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