Why Art needs PR
“A portrait! What could be more simple and more complex, more obvious and more profound.”
Art and PR never used to be so interlinked, but now many artists wouldn’t dare launch an exhibit without the helping hand of a PR professional. Art PR is a fantastic tool that artists can use to enhance buzz around their work. The public are always curious to discover the latest news, with phones, laptops, televisions, apps and much more, people are able to access the media at a click of their fingers. The world is very hungry to hear what’s new and it might as well be your art people are talking about.
Some of the ways PR can help promote art are:
- Connecting your artwork with a wider media outreach and target audiences
- Communicating your art with specific art journalists
- Targeted social media management and engagement by growing a larger audience online
- Developing relationships with collectors, curators, buyers, appreciators and other endorsers
- Event management and collaboration
How to utilise PR to let people know what’s going on:
- New exhibitions
- New projects
- Studio life
- Press coverage, social media mentions and news
Strategy is always very important when creating a PR plan, knowing what you want and when you want it is key:
- Know exactly who your audience is
- Grow an understanding of how to connect with your audience
- Develop your message and brand
- Devise a timeline of your goals and targets to reach
Case Study | Portrait Artists
An example of the benefits of art PR is shown through contemporary and successful portrait painters and photographers in particular those whose subjects tend to be famous people or like to capture famous faces.
Here are our top portrait artists who have utilised PR in growing their audiences and achieving numerous exhibitions and press coverage:
- Nadav Kander
Arguably one of the most influential portrait photographers, Nadav’s style combines contemporary with classical and merges the two into a documentation delight. Famously known for his series “Obama’s People”, he documented the USA President’s elite team giving a glimpse into life in the White House. He has a keen eye for detail and this is perhaps the reason for his great successes; Driver, Salt Lake, Utah is one of his prized series in 1997 that launched his career into contemporary portrait photography.
- Pieter Hugo
A young photographer whose work is influenced by contemporary issues; documenting unique arts, traditions, history and everyday life of African communities in modern day. He explores the cultural differences communities face and has given African people a voice through his photography.
- Annie Leibovitz
Annie shot to fame more recently through her exclusive portraits of Caitlyn Jenner (formally Bruce Jenner, USA gold medallist heptathlon champion) after his recent sex change transition. She captured a pivotal moment for the transgender community, Bruce was a considered a hero in the public eye and his transition has been said to have inspired many more transgender people to be honest and open about themselves. Leibovitz has a portfolio of iconic images, as former Rolling Stone chief photographer and now as a contributor at Vanity Fair she has worked with the most famous people in the world.
Often lost behind the beauty of his works, Rehahn is a silent artist when it comes to his contemporary portrait photography. He is considered the world’s best portrait photographer and is responsible for the some of the greatest photographs showcasing the beauty across India, Vietnam and Cuba. He envelopes different cultures within his portraits but always tells of a deeper meaning through his pieces.
- George H. Lewis
George H. Lewis a British-born artist, based in New York City with a worldly identity. He has traveled across the globe to over 80 countries although seems to have a soft spot for the Middle East. George’s portraits have amassed a private collector base of celebrities, Heads of States and Royalty such as Bear Grylls; Tea Leoni; HRH The Duchess of Cornwall; Pippa Middleton; Valentino; HRH Prince Hassan of Jordan; The Sultan of Oman; The Maharaja of Jodhpur; and Ex-President of Nigeria, Olusegun Obasanjo to name but a few.
- Lynette Yiadom-Boakye
It is skill and impeccable technique that has Lynette lauded as an artist. Known for working very quickly – she can complete a painting in a day – her subjects are occasionally figments of her imagination that she brings so vividly to life with nothing but a paintbrush and her canvas. In a contemporary art world where everyone is pushing boundaries via installations and conceptual art, it is rather refreshing to see the simplicity of her works that have no gadgets or gimmicks – she is just a fascinating painter of people!