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February 29, 2008

Congrats to Jen Bekman...

Well... we at MAO thought Jen Bekman was a secret find of ours.. NOT!! We totally love her blog personism.. Jen_bekman_with_dog and we always go shopping every week at her amazing 20x200 art project, like here and here...which is bringing cool art to the masses.

Oh.. and of course we can't forget Jen's uber cool LES gallery, and her Hey Hot Shot! young emerging photographer project.

(photo by Gabriele Stabile, of Jen with her dog Ollie)

But.. it now looks like Jen has arrived, to the Big time..via the New York Times (Why it's in the Home and Garden section we have no idea....like what's up with that?).

Congrats to Jen Bekman..  clearly you're a new force to be reckoned with on the Lower East Side gallery world! XXOOXX MAO

Here's the New York Times Story by Julie Scelfo, Easing the Pain of Collecting.

There is even a Multimedia link on-line for the MP3 And if that wasn't enough good news for Jen...

Clearly all her hard work is paying off.. Hence.. It's no surprise Jen has joined an elite photography group, by winning this years Griffen Museum Rising Star Photography award.


Hmm.. MAO, being a total numbers geek, we were wondering.. Just how financially amazing is Jen's 20x200 project...not that anyone but MAO is counting. So.... with..

200 prints at $20 = $4,000  +  20 prints at $200 = $4,000 +  2 prints at $2,000 = $4,000

For a grand total of $12,000.. very nice..

And if they do 2 prints per week for 52 weeks per year... that's $1,248,000 per year. Now that's SWEET! Way to go Jen!

If Jen split's that with her artists...thats.. a nice tidy some of doe-rae-mee to help out some new young artists, make some young collectors happy.. and feed her cute pup Ollie too!!


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Not to belittle Jen's excellent project, but the actual sales would be a fraction of that. A quick scan of the site shows that most prints sell only 50-100 of the small size, and a couple of the medium and none of the large. That means most individual artists (assuming a 50% commission) make $500-1000.

I've been following 20x200 since it began...It seems that they have a couple of editons that sell out a month in the small and medium sizes. But when you keep checking back in you see they also sell from inventory. My guess is that eventually when the project becomes better known that they will sell down most pieces in the small and medium sizes. Seems like a good business to me and more power to her. My 2 20x200 prints are probably my favorite purchases I've made in the last year, not only because they are beautiful, but also because they seemed like such a good deal. Where else does someone buy an editioned Brian Ulrich for 200 bucks?

Love Jen Beckman 20 x 200 when does prints out of photographs mostly.
I had bought a few including Brian Ulrich's (wish I gotten a bigger one).
The write up in the NYT is very good and should help promoting her business.
It is a great site for new collectors and for art lovers on a art bugdet.
Congratulations Jen...you rock!
Thanks MAO for info!

20x200 is a very smart project, I just wish they have some more serious work up there like Brian Ulrich and uhmmm.... to answer you why it's on the Home and Garden session, because that article is not about art at all, it is more about her apartment and oh-so-hard success.

was it really important to do the math ? seems like its no business of yours to publicize the #$.

I don't mind MAO doing the math - may all those numbers come true, says I! The thing is that even if they did, the gross revenue might be dazzling, but our margins are quite slim. It takes a lot of transacting to come up with that number, whereas a different approach might have me at the Armory wooing a collector to drop that much on a single piece.

Julie Scelfo is a staff reporter for that section of the paper, and she was the person to pitch the story and get it approved, as a profile of me. I feel lucky that it discussed my projects as much as it did, and I'm quite pleased with its placement. I'm excited about new collectors who haven't bought art yet and maybe don't even know that they can, or that they should. Those people are more likely to be reading the Home section than the Arts section.

As for the project's curatorial track record, I'm proud of it. There are plenty of big name artists on the schedule, and our program is very much a work in progress - we're only six months old after all. I do know this: I'll feature big names and emerging artists side by side, I'll mix up high and low with impunity and I'll have a grand old time doing it. My approach to curating is as egalitarian as my approach to developing a clientele is, and I plan to continue on in that vein.

20x200 rocks. I love the Brian Ulrich photo I bought from Jen, but even more important than a great price is the way her site (including the gallery and Hey Hot Shot) introduced me to some photographers I didn't know. I was thrilled to discover Nina Berman's work, and am sure there are more love-at-first-sight surprises in store.

Many thanks to Jen. What a wonderful idea. I've spent 100's of dollars so far and plan to continue. In fact, I'm more likely to by more for less. I love art but can't afford most and don't know enough artists (who's work I like -- sorry guys) who might part w/ some work on the cheep. Moreover, Jen, I hope this venture brings in many more new collectors and creates buzz for the gallery. That should pay dividends down the road.

FYI -- A couple of 20x200's photographers just landed on the Photo District News list of top emerging photographers (Baguskas, Piontek).

Those two very fine photographers are joined fellow Hey, Hot Shot! alums Shen Wei and Daniel Traub, both of whom are on board for future editions on 20x200. Also, Ian Baguskas has a solo show opening at the gallery in a couple of weeks - the reception's on Friday March 21st. And Birthe has 6 gorgeous prints hanging in the gallery as I type.

The process of trying to purchase several different prints in one stop vs. multiple times as now , I think (from a returning customer point of view) that it will be helpful for volume purchases, to buy at bulk at once.The fact that you have to go back and do the whole thing over might discourage multiple purchases . I understand the shipping rules and to keep shipping cost down of 20 x 200, but I think this might encourage sales and save time for the buyer.
Shopping tonight!

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