Visiting an Art Gallery Tips

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Visiting an art gallery can be a very interesting and even stimulating experience. However, it can also be quite confusing and even a little bit intimidating. There are bound to be pieces that you find aesthetically appealing and artwork that you simply do not understand. This is quite normal considering that artists are not always on the same level as those that enjoy their work but cannot always understand it. What is important is to enjoy what you see and be open to the visions of others that might send you rocketing out of your comfort zone. Remember, what goes on inside your head isn’t always the same picture that others will see. With that in mind, here are many ways that you might find it easier to enjoy your next trip to an art gallery.

Visiting an Art Gallery

Art galleries are essential venues that are used to display and showcase the type of talent that the public feels is worthy of note. When visiting such locations it goes without saying that you need to respect the art of those that have produced such pieces, but it is also advised to go in with an open mind, as will be described. Here are a few tips to remember when walking through a gallery.

Beautiful display of street art

1) Go with a friend.

It’s always fun to go out with someone if only to have another person to talk to. In this case, however, it is interesting to take a look at the same pieces and discover what you and your friend each see. There might be some part of the piece that you missed or something you might have noticed that your friend did not that brings the design into greater perspective.

2) Be selective in what you wish to view.

Depending on the gallery there might be more to see than you realize. Don’t feel the need to see and comment on everything. Pick your favorite artist, period, or medium and start there. This can minimize the amount of time you spend walking around simply trying to take in everything. Such an act can easily leave you overwhelmed and unable to appreciate the more intricate notes of each piece.

3) Create a backstory for each piece.

An art gallery is meant to inspire and create new and exciting thought processes that lead to further innovation. As you view those pieces that you find most stimulating take the time to stop and ponder what went into it, what the subject might have been, and what the artist was trying to say with this particular piece. A large part of art is perception and interpretation, and creating what each piece means in your words and ideas brings an interesting amount of whimsy to such a viewing.

4) Make use of digital devices.

If you want the lowdown on a particular piece or artist, it is recommended to purchase an audio guide that can be used to give you a better idea of what you might be looking at and what it means. These devices can give up to date information directly from the curator or even the artist, allowing you a unique look into their inspiration and reason behind their work.

5) Take the guided tour.

This is often recommended if it is your first time. This can allow you to fully enjoy the pieces while someone else points out the nuances of the design and the accomplishments of the artist. It can also give you a better idea of the scope of just how an art gallery operates.

6) Try a family activity trail.

Many galleries are now switching to a family-friendly format and are including activity trails that allow children and their families to experience the traditional art gallery while being able to interact in a manner that is meant to inspire and stimulate the creativity of younger art lovers. In short, this is a perfect way to inspire the next generation of aspiring artists.

Starry Night by Vincent Van Gogh. Perhaps one of the most famous paintings ever. Available to be seen at an art gallery.

7) Take photographs when possible.

Several galleries will allow the use of non-flash photography provided it is for personal use. Always ask however before you start filling up your camera with pictures. Some artists are rather sensitive about their work being copied or in any way converted to another medium, so it pays to be polite. Just remember that if you plan to use the photographs for anything other than personal use you will run the risk of infringing on the copyright laws of the artist, which is not a wise idea.

8) Visit the gift shop.

If you want a memento or a reminder of what you’ve seen the gift shop will be a perfect place to visit to find the one thing you might think is perfect to display in your home as a memory.

9) Have a pleasing conversation in the cafe.

Many galleries have a gift shop and even a small cafe attached to them to better serve their guests. Before or after your viewing take the time to enter into a conversation or two concerning the artwork and anything about the gallery. You might be pleasantly surprised at how easy it is to fall into a pleasurable chat.

10) Summarize the experience.

Just take a few minutes to find a few ideal words that will best explain the experience and your reaction to it. These words should be able, to sum up what you saw, how it affected you, and the reaction it provoked. After concluding the manner in which you were affected by what you saw, the challenge should be to return to the gallery at least once more to see if your initial reaction still holds firm after having seen the displays for the first time. Surprisingly, many individuals never look at the same piece the same way twice.

Art is by definition the creative expression of humanity and as such provokes a response within many individuals in very different ways. You should feel it a personal challenge to visit an art gallery at least once or twice in your life to simply experience what it is like to view the workings of another’s mind, so as to gain just a little more perspective on life from a different perspective.