In 2014, Ali Cavanaugh had 11 galleries representing her work throughout the U.S. and even overseas. It was all she could do to paint fast enough to supply these galleries with new work.
What a great problem to have, right? But something wasn’t sitting right with Ali. So she asked each of the 11 galleries to return her work. One by one they sent back what few paintings remained in their inventories.
There was no animosity. Ali greatly appreciated all the work the galleries did on her behalf, but she was no longer satisfied with the status quo.
She had begun to reconsider not just what her business model looked like, but the art itself.
She decided to take control and be very deliberate about her next moves.
Music by Wildermiss
In episode 33 of the Art Biz Podcast, you’ll hear about:
- Ali’s first steps as an artist and initial gallery representation.
- Why galleries weren’t interested in work behind glass.
- How Ali took 6 months to teach herself a new watercolor technique and why it was important to do this.
- How Ali used her blog to attract press coverage and interest from galleries.
- How Ali has expanded her audience using social media.
- Ali’s philosophy of the artist’s journey and micro-evolution.
- Why it’s critical to challenge yourself as an artist.
- Why Instagram is the perfect platform for getting affirmation for your work.
- The reason Ali pulled her art from galleries and what happened to those 25 pieces.
- How Ali began raising her prices and why art fairs were the best venue for the new prices.
- Ali’s monograph that was published by Unicorn Publishing in 2019.
- Details of Ali’s intention to renovate a property in the small town of St. Genevieve, Missouri.
- Ali’s upcoming plans for Patreon.
Music by Wildermiss
About My Guest
Ali Cavanaugh studied painting at Kendall College of Art and Design and the New York Studio Residency Program in New York City, earning a BFA from Kendall College of Art and Design in 1995. At the age of 22, she co-founded an atelier–The New School Academy of Fine Art–in Grand Rapids, Michigan. She relocated to Santa Fe, New Mexico in 2001. It was during her six years in Santa Fe that she developed her modern fresco process on kaolin clay.
Her paintings have been the subject of numerous national and international solo and group exhibitions. Cavanaugh's paintings have been featured on book covers, countless internet features such as the Huffington Post, Fine Art Connoisseur, Artsy and in numerous print publications including The New York Times Magazine, American Art Collector, American Artist Watercolor. She has painted portraits for TIME magazine and The New York Times. Her work is featured in more than 400 private and corporate collections throughout North America, Europe, Asia, and Australia. She currently lives in St Louis, Missouri.
In 2019, the gorgeous monograph Ali Cavanaugh: Modern Fresco Paintings was published.
Follow Ali on Instagram: @_alicavanaugh_