Virtual Exhibitions- Innovation or Desperation?

Online art exhibitions, the latest attempt to share art with the world in a time of social distancing and lousy lockdowns.

Art galleries and exhibitions, like so many other creative industries, have been rocked by the pandemic.

The Financial Times estimates Art Galleries’ sales fell by an average of 36% in just the first half of 2020, with smaller galleries seemingly hit the hardest.

But where there is disruption we will find innovation, as art galleries explore the idea of virtual exhibitions and the challenge of taking art online.

Many galleries have turned to OVRs, Online Viewing Rooms; showcasing artworks and encouraging online purchasing in a desperate attempt to keep business and artists afloat in these tumultuous times.

But just who is buying art online? Arguments made by journalist Melanie Gerlis suggest only better known, and in-demand artists benefit from an online art market, once again leaving smaller artists and galleries in their wake.

Is it really possible to explore the wonders of art, without seeing it in person? Can we interpret, feel and appreciate a gallery or exhibition through the internet?

It’s a stretch, I will say that. Art , galleries and exhibitions are most certainly an experience best felt in person. Yet in a time where for so many this is impossible, online art exhibitions are a fantastic way to keep us connected to the world of art.

With many struggling with the loneliness of lockdown, the offer of virtual art galleries and online exhibitions provides perfect escape from the stresses that surround us.

Online galleries give us a moment of distraction, drawing us into their world and providing light relief from the pressures and worries of a global pandemic. We need art now more than ever.

There are so many wonderful online exhibitions on the horizon. Contemporary Art Curator Magazine have just realised a fantastic online exhibition available until June 2021, featuring fantastic works such as that of Dmitry and his emotion inspired pieces.

There are plenty more wondrous options to fill your boots with, check out CultureWhisper’s list of the best online art exhibitions available this spring.

Whilst times may be tough for the world of art, a turn towards virtual galleries and online exhibitions is most certainly a great example innovation. Whilst an imperfect means and certainly not preference for artists, galleries or fans virtual exhibitions bring us the joy of art in a time when we need it most.

I’m all for virtual galleries, and I hope you’ll be giving them a chance too.

Written By: Jessica Rowe