Let me clarify: I'm specifically referring to artists who donate their own artwork (As opposed to art collectors who gift art they own to a charity art auction or museum) to a charity auction. If you are an artist, you know what I mean. You get that letter in the mail stating how much exposure you will get if you donate artwork to a "big charity auction" for The Cause. Plus Dear Artist, it's a tax write off! It's a win-win!
Mostly it's win-win for the auction. You can only deduct the cost of the art materials and the charity must be a tax-exempt charity such as a church group, school, non-profit hospital, etc. These are generally 501(c)(3) organizations.
Please donate work to the charity of your choice if it makes you feel awesome about giving to causes close to your heart and you can afford to give it away. I do. But I don't expect exposure that will lead to more sales. I just want that good feeling I get when I give to a good cause.
But don't do it because you will get more "exposure" as an artist. Ask any artist (I'm raising my hand!) that was duped into donating art because it will "get your name out there" and give you "exposure". Now ask the artist how many people that attended the auction contacted them later to buy more art.
|Stone fish, downtown Santa Fe, NM|