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  • Social Media Marketing for Artists

    Location: Markham, ON

    The Markham Group of Artists presents Charie Ginete-Ilon, who will be presenting Social..
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  • KANA WAIN DIDA - Looking after each other

    Location: Winnipeg, MB

    COVID-19, Indigenous Communities, Health Sovereignty and Working Together for Change Join Kitatipithitamak Mithwayawin for..
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  • 6x6x2021- International Call For Art

    Location: Rochester, NY

    Join the International Small Art Phenomenon 6x6x2021! Entries for 6x6x2021 are due April 10,..
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  • 6th Annual Artist's Choice Art Competition

    Location: Palm Springs, CA

    Fusion Art invites submissions for the 6th Annual Artist’s Choice art competition for..
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  • 11th Annual

    Location: Palm Springs, CA

    Light Space & Time Online Art Gallery announces an art call for the..
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  • Enter Paint and Sculpture Ontario

    Location: lambton Shores, ON

    Paint Ontario 2020 was a huge success – many talented artists submitted paintings..
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  • National Oil and Acrylic Painters Society 2021 Spring Online International Exhibition

    Location: Windsor, ON

    The National Oil & Acrylic Painters’ Society (NOAPS) invites oil and acrylic painters..
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  • Lebel Mansion Gallery Call for Submissions for 2022 Gallery Season

    Location: Pincher Creek, AB

    The Allied Arts Council of Pincher Creek strives to host thought-provoking exhibitions that..
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  • Large Works

    Location: Truro, NS

    Our annual winter show of large works is now on display at the..
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  • Exhibition: RE-EMERGENCE

    Location: Calgary, AB

    WE’RE BACK!! After a long and lonely year, 2020, Carbon Point Gallery and it's..
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  • see “a village dreams” virtually

    Location: Toronto, ON

    Visit Gallery Arcturus – vicariously: “a village dreams” has installations by deborah harris -- Up..
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  • The Chelsea International Photography Competition

    Location: New York, AB

    The Chelsea International Photography Competition (CIPC) honors our gifted talents all over the..
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  • 12th Artist Spotlight Solo Art Competition

    Location: Palm Springs, CA

    Fusion Art is now accepting entries for the 12th Artist Spotlight Solo Art..
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  • 3rd Into the Wild Quarterly Art Competition

    Location: Palm Springs, CA

    Fusion Art invites submissions for the 3rd Into the Wild Online Art Competition. 2D..
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  • Call for Proposals: AGO X RBC Artist-in-Residence Program 2021

    Location: Toronto , ON

    Three paid digital residencies available in 2021. Deadline for submissions: March 10, 2021 at..
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  • Call For Visual Artists-Boynes Emerging Artist Award 4th Edition

    Location: Melbourne,

    The Boynes Emerging Artist Award is an independent artist-run International 2D art competition..
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  • A Mysterious Attraction: A new spin on gravitational art

    Location: Port Moody, BC

    Meet the artists at a Virtual Opening Reception and tour of the exhibition. Edzy..
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  • $550.00 Innovate Grants — Call for Artists + Photographers

    Location: , FL

    Innovate Grant is now accepting submissions for the Winter 2021 Cycle. Innovate Grant..
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  • Check Jooble for Art related Jobs

    Location: Ottawa, ON

    Looking for a job in the ARTS in Canada? We have thousands of..
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Painter's a master in art of the deal

By Tom Keyser June 23, 2003

} Painter's a master in art of the deal Paul Van Ginkel blends puts creativity back in business By Tom Keyser Contrary to faded, romantic notions of roach-infested garrets and severed earlobes, plenty of artists uphold their integrity while they’re enjoying commercial success. Picasso hit primo pay dirt. Monet made money. But nobody accused them of selling out. For an example in the here and now, consider Calgary painter Paul Van Ginkel. Van Ginkel bolted from his salaried job as a Calgary Herald graphic artist about 12 years ago. He works out of a splendid studio/loft in the high-rent district. Shannon Oatway, Business EdgePaul Van Ginkel is surrounded by his art in his home. His oils hang in the homes of discerning collectors. He has created long-term relationships with galleries in Palm Springs, Calif., and Santa Fe, N.M., which ranks as North America’s third-largest art market (trailing only New York and L.A.) A starving artist he ain’t. Yet Van Ginkel fiercely protects a set of high standards. Yes, he occasionally issues limited-edition prints of his work, such as those he donated to the Chickwagon gang’s charity auction this week (see image below left). The painting he donated to the Chickwagon team. But Van Ginkel refuses to dabble in assembly-line poster production. Unlike, say, Thomas Kinkaide, current darling of the North American mass market, you won’t find Van Ginkel images adorning placemats, teacups or T-shirts. Not to say that he eschews the business of art. Au contraire. Van Ginkel not only paints about 100 canvases annually, he has studied every nuance of the art of the deal. He serves as his own chief negotiator, marketing agent and pricing consultant. And with a 30-inch x 40-inch Van Ginkel original fetching prices in the $4,000 range, it’s pointless to deny the obvious: stiletto-sharp business skills are among his most valuable assets. There’s no time like the present to evaluate Van Ginkel’s western-themed creations. A 22-piece Van Ginkel collection may be viewed during the annual Stampede art sale in the Roundup Centre’s West Hall. (For a thumbnail preview of his contribution, connect to Paul’s website at: ) Van Ginkel reveres the Stampede show because it provided his first big break. And he considers his annual participation in the Western Showcase the most important exhibit of the year. Enormous crowds saunter past his booth and he expects to sell at least 20 paintings during the show. He sometimes remarks that he pays the mortgage in front of his easel. But the buyers don’t bite until the product goes to market. And, here, too, the artist is a past master. "I consider myself to be an artist . . . AND a businessman," Van Ginkel said. As such, he pays attention to the most minute promotional details. In advance of a show, he mails postcards to each of 2,500 names on his mailing list. If a prospective buyer expresses interest during an exhibit, chances are he’ll receive a follow-up call from the artist, who has perfected a smooth sales style. One of the most delicate tasks undertaken by the chief exec of Van Ginkel Visuals is the matter of pricing his own creations. "If you want to do this as a career, you’d better develop a pricing strategy," he said. "It’s acceptable to marginally increase your prices each year." "But if you’re just starting to sell paintings, don’t start out with a price that’s too high. Because if you’re forced to roll back your price, you’re shooting yourself in the foot." A canvas is priced with the market in mind. And it’s the artist’s job to know the market. As Van Ginkel says, it’s impressive to see an exhibited painting with a sticker price of $25,000. But till the money changes hands, a big-ticket price is nothing more than a number. Meanwhile, a hard-headed attitude to negotiation remains a useful arrow in any artist’s commercial quiver. Frequently, a buyer will try to run a lowball price past the artist. It’s the wealthiest art lovers who drive the shrewdest bargains. As Van Ginkel puts it, "they love the game of it." But Van Ginkel rarely rolls over. He enjoys the game as much as they do and, besides, there’s more on the table than merely the price of the picture in question. "It’s important not to sell yourself short," he advised. "Because word gets around. People talk." In Western art circles, plenty of them are talking about Van Ginkel. He’s one of the hottest commodities around because his enigmatic, heavily shadowed images have struck responsive chords with art buyers across a continent. Then, too, he’s equally accomplished in the art of the deal ______________________________________ Tom's specialty is putting a human face on the names behind the business news. During 16 years as a columnist for the Calgary Herald, his assignments carried him to Afghanistan, England, Germany, Greece, Poland, the Philippines, Hong Kong, and post-war Bosnia. His byline has appeared in the New York Times and the Sunday Times of South Africa, and now you can find him each week in The Keyser Report on Page 3 of The Edge. © 2002 Business Edge Inc. All rights reserved.