Why Banning Photography in Art Venues is Ridiculous

A few weeks ago Paddy voiced some of the frustration that all of us feel in regards to the prohibition of photography in commercial galleries.

Bloggy & JamesWagner have already blogged about galleries they won’t cover because of their photographic prohibitions. I have my own list but I usually ignore the rules and take photos anyway (discretely if I have to–which means the photos turn out worse).

I feel that galleryists (and some artists) take themselves far too seriously. As a creative professional you put things out into the world and allow them to live in real and virtual space and you can’t micromanage their perception.

This prohibition is part of the reason I blog so much about street art. With no one to hinder my experience (and how I record that experience) I feel a sense of freedom posting about street art that I don’t with gallery works.

I blog in order to combine my love of word and image, a gallery doesn’t have control over anything I write then why should it have control over anything I record? Is the image more valuable than the word? Why can I write a beaming or vicious review of show but can’t take a fantastic or awful photo of the same exhibition?

As a blogger and as a critic I want to communicate my experience and sometimes photography or video is the best way to do that.

Considering the recent climate where the heirs of an artist estate get money hungry (which happens more often than you might think) I’m sure this won’t be the last time I blog about this topic.

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