How to Set Up a Pop-Up Art Gallery in 7 Steps

Art Gallery Le Marais

Pop-up art galleries – displaying work by designers, photographers or other artists – are becoming extremely popular because they allow immense flexibility, while not requiring a large commitment of time and money. A pop-up gallery or store can be a great option for retailers, boutique shops, local artists and designers and even real estate agents. Here are some things to take into consideration before you get started!

1. Concept. The concept for your pop-up art gallery should be fresh and original as this gives you a limited time to display your goods or designs to current fans, while also drawing in new people to see your work.

2. Create. Your pop-up art gallery should give your local audience a real taste of who you are as an artist or brand that showcases your best and newest products or designs.

3. Negotiation. Venue owners with vacant spaces are typically very receptive to working out favorable rents and terms for pop-up art galleries and shops. After all, the space is not currently bringing in any money, and a pop-up event often showcases the space well, which can help the landlord attract a permanent tenant.

4. Promotion: Promoting your event is what will make it a resounding success. People must be know about your pop-up shop and have compelling reasons to visit. Think of different options for getting the word out, such as passing out flyers, offering special day-of-event discounts or doing some cooperative advertising with related businesses are good ideas. Do not overlook mobile applications and social media, as those trends work well with pop-up shops. Here are our 5 golden rules for attracting media attention >>

5. Setup. Since your pop-up gallery will be short-lived, don’t spend the time or costs for permanent-quality displays. Because you’ve chosen this venue type, it usually means time and/or funds are limited. Keep that in mind when setting up so that you keep your expenditures, both money and effort, in line with your budget and desired results. Here are some design ideas to steal from to make yours stand out!

6. Space. Do not make the mistake of thinking any space will do. Choose a space that’s appropriate to your concept as this is critical to the success of your gallery. A place to find great gallery space is on Storefront.

7. Timing. Pay close attention to the timing of your showing; do not schedule it to coincide with events that might draw away your potential visitors. On the flip side, scheduling it on the same weekend as a festival or some other event that will send additional traffic to your pop-up venue can be a very wise move.

To get you started, here are some stunning galleries available in New York City, Paris, London and Hong Kong.

New York



Hong Kong

Last updated: March 26, 2020