You may have some questions about Birmingham Open Studios is you have not joined us before. Before submitting a new query, please see these Frequently Asked Questions below:
What kind of art can I exhibit?
All types of physical/tangible art are welcome (painting/sculpture/photography etc). We do not accept performance art
I don’t live in the catchment area. Can I still participate?
Yes, but you will have to find a venue to exhibit from within the catchment area. You can try approaching friends/artists in the area to share their space. Alternatively, we can help assist you to find a community space to share. Just get in touch as soon as possible, as these spaces are limited.
I cannot exhibit from my house/studio
If you live in the area, but cannot use your own location, please consider asking a local friend to share their space. Alternatively, we can help assist you to find a community space to share.
Can we supply studios?
No, as we do not own any studios ourselves. Our purpose is to promote your existing studios to the public, so they can see what goes on behind closed doors.
I cannot make the dates/times. Can I exhibit another date/time?
No, sorry. The times and dates are set. However, you don’t have to exhibit each date. You can exhibit between 1-4 dates. However, you must be available from 11am-5pm on each day you participate.
Do I have to be there on the days I participate?
We recommend you are there to interact with the art-loving visitors, as Open Studios is all about interaction, and the public will have travelled to see you. The whole concept allows visitors a face-to-face experience that is beneficial to both parties.
However, if you need to take a break to pick up the kids for example, please make sure someone is there to cover you in your absence.
Do I have to sell my art?
Open Studios measure our success to some extent in sales made, but no, you are not obligated to sell. You can show off art that could be part of a charity or recovery project for yourself, or you can donate works if you wish. You can also display works/projects that are purely for entertainment. Or you can exhibit works that you want to keep.
How much does it cost?
The membership fee is £42 per artist. This cost is the same regardless of whether 2 or more artists share one address.
However, if more than one artist work together as a collective and wish to exhibit under a collective term (a pottery group for example) then it will be £42 for the collective to join.
Do I have to pay commission?
No, Open Studios do not take commission. Every pound you make is yours! However, if you decide to exhibit from a local shop, shop rules may dictate that you have to pay them commission.
How much will I sell?
There is no guarantee you will sell anything, but in 2019 the average takings per artist was £151 per day. The largest sale last year was £3000, and other artists sold nothing.
How many visitors will come to my studio?
This is dependent on your studio’s location, whether you share with another artist and general weather conditions on the day. Some studios have low footfall of a handful per day, whilst other studios can get 100+ visitors in one day. The average visitor number per venue, per day last year was about 40 visitors per day
Do I need insurance?
We recommend getting short-term public liability insurance to protect the property, visitors and yourself against any mishap or accident.
Do I have to let everyone in if I don’t feel comfortable doing so?
Absolutely not. If you don’t like the look of someone, or feel threatened, treat your home like you would any other day of the year. This is your house and they have no right to enter. If someone tries to force entry call the police.
How much should I charge for my art?
This is completely up to you, but there are good guidelines online about how to price up your works. These take into account time, materials, promotion, living costs, originality, quality and competition.
Where does my membership money go?
Most of the membership money goes straight into promotion and website costs. Thousands of guidebooks are printed, hundreds of posters, flyers and dozens of banners, plus paid slots for local advertising and meeting space rentals etc. The coordinators also make a small profit for their time.
When is the deadline to sign up?
The deadline to sign up for Open Studios 2020 is July 12th
What if I have to cancel?
If you cancel before July 12th, you will be issued with a full refund and your name will not be published in the guide/website.
If you cancel after this date you will not receive a refund, as the guide will go to print with your name in it. If this occurs, please let us know as soon as possible so we can make the public aware. We will also ask for you to put a sign on your door to make visitors aware.
If we haven’t answered your question here, please contact us or email us at email@example.com