I am writing this blog to encourrage other Artist's who may work with unusual materials as an art medium to look outside the box (pardon the pun) with unusual ways to promote their art. I work with reclaiming corrugated boxes to create three dimensional sculpture and came into contact with someone whom I never expected or thought of to do any business with ever...the folks at Ripley's. They being the "Believe it or Not" folks we all know.
In the Summer of 2009 I received an email from a gentleman who introduced himself as an Assistant to the head Curator at Ripley Entertainment in Orlando, Florida. He found out about my work thru Google search and inquired about my art thinking it rather unusual and fitting for what they promote at their oddities museums. As it turned out I was heading to Ft. Myers, Florida with my Father-In-Law helping him drive a vehicle down to his condo where he was soon to retire. I also just happened to be bringing a couple of art pieces with me as planned to place them under consignment with a "green" gallery located in Sarasota. Timing couldn't have been more perfect, allowing me to make an appointment to meet all and of course present myself and art conveniently while in route on vacation.
I stayed over night at a hotel before making the last leg of my trip to the condo and in the morning met with Mr. Edward Meyer the Chief Curator and also the senior tenure of the Ripley team. It was a wonderful visit that included a tour for where they warehouse all the artifacts that you see in their museums. Cool stuff like shrunken heads, two headed calf and a space shuttle rendition made from tooth picks. Mr. Meyer liked what he seen of my art and not too long after leaving the facility made me a generous offer for one of my sculptures for which I delivered to him. The sculpture currently on exhibit in Atlantic City, N.J. (link below) along with another art piece that I developed for them (Ripley Entertainment logo) located in San Francisco, CA.
As I mention in the tag line, this was somebody that I never fathomed to do business with and not your typical gallery setting but none-the-less, great exposure for me. Another recognizable name to add to the CV and something also extraordinarily fun to talk about. Things like this are a means to build a following of sorts for yourself just simply by attaching your art to a "big" name. Not too long afterwards I was awarded with a photo of the logo being featured in the architectural magazine "Perspective" which made for a stronger relationship with Ripley as they gained exposure by my promoting as well. I know from writing them earlier this month that plans are for me to be referenced in an up coming year end book for which I will be thrilled to have inclusion. I have two children and will be over joyed when they can show their classmates at the school library that hey, their Dad's in there.
If you are an Artist that has something off the wall that you do or create with I would strongly suggest contacting them down in Orlando. Ripley's is making a huge push in finding the unusual and don't be surprised if they come to you with a purchase price as are always making acquisitions. I know for a fact that aside from the typical sideshow things as in sword swallowers, bearded women and the like, they are also making a push searching for novelty art. I was even personally told by Mr. Meyer that if I came across anything my way to please make him privy to and I have.