February 11, 2021 | Alyson Stanfield

A Quiet Gallery Experience with Simonne Roy

What is something special you can do for your email subscribers and collectors when your shows and large events are canceled because of a pandemic?

Give them a private viewing experience, of course.

For years, Simonne Roy has been hosting 50 – 60 VIPs for a one-night party in her home, which she transforms into a gallery. The money and effort she invested in the event resulted in good sales and meaningful relationships. Each year's success built on that of previous years.

Oil painting of sunflowers in a field artist Simonne Roy
©Simonne Roy, Sunflower Fields of Union County. Oil on canvas, 12 x 48 inches.

When Covid struck last year, her hopes for a successful home gallery show were dashed, until, like many scrappy entrepreneurs, Simonne found a different way to make it happen.

She decided to hold the VIP appreciation without the party. In this episode of the Art Biz Podcast you'll hear how Simonne gave people a private encounter with the art—something few people ever get to have. She calls it the Quiet Gallery Experience.

If she measured its success by the amount of sales only, she could have counted it a success. But sales were almost secondary because Simonne measured her success by the goodwill she created with her subscribers and collectors.

Listen closely to hear what she did to set the stage and make it special, what she would do differently next time, and how she netted the same amount of money from the participation of fewer people.

Music by Wildermiss

oil painting of french pastries in store artist Simonne Roy
©Simonne Roy, Sweet Anticipation. Oil on canvas, 16 x 20 inches.

Highlights

  • Simonne Roy shares the journey that led to her art business and her current income sources. (2:28)
  • Transforming a house into an intimate, personalized home gallery. (7:10)

    Home transformed into gallery Simonne roy
    Simonne Roy's home gallery is the perfect place for an intimate viewing experience.
  • The inspiration that saved Simonne’s gallery experience during Covid. (13:42)
  • How greater vulnerability can result in more meaningful connections. (20:05)
  • Scheduling a full day of showings and Simonne’s goal for each visitor. (21:51)
  • Preparing any space for a full gallery experience. (25:22)
  • Results from the gallery including sales, a teaching offer, and increased connections. (29:29)
  • Reducing overhead for an event can result in positive net sales. (34:10)
  • Marketing an event and creating a thoughtful gift for your customers. (36:14)
  • Simonne shares the lessons she learned for next time. (38:11)
  • A peek at what is holding Simonne’s attention in the studio now. (38:34)

Mentioned

Marcher jusqu'au soir by Lydie Salvayre

Simonne Roy Quotes

  • “A lot of my skills through working with you, Alyson, have really had a direct impact on my success.”
  • “Oftentimes the things that sell are not what I would have expected.”
  • “The sales are secondary, or maybe equal to the connections I made and the lessons I learned.”
  • “My goal was to create a quiet gallery experience. Just you and the art and it was going to be peaceful.”

About My Guest

Simonne Roy describes herself as a contemporary American impressionist painter grounded in the plein air landscape painting tradition. She is also a Francophile, and has lived in France for extended periods over the years—adding quintessential French subjects such as pastries, breads, and cheeses to her nature-inspired paintings.

A lifelong resident of Pennsylvania, Roy lives in Lewisburg, where she maintains her studio and home gallery.

Follow Simonne on Instagram: @simonneroy

Music by Wildermiss

3 comments add a comment
  • I always love your Podcasts Alyson, but I really loved this interview with Simonne! Your paintings are fabulous and it was genius to paint the food and then marry up the catering for your event. I really like the idea of asking people to choose there favourtie painting and then making this a feature. And how generous to let people cut flowers or pick vegetables from what I’m sure is an amazing garden. All such a creative way to make lemonade out of a bunch of lemons! Well done.

  • Alyson, you have a gift for interviewing, in addition to your many other gifts as a wonderful art biz coach! Thank you for shining the light on my art biz through this podcast. I hope it helps other artists who may feel stuck during the pandemic.

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