Seven Steps For Setting Up Your Own Exhibition

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When starting an exhibition – collaborative or solo – you first need to decide what it’s going to be about. Do you want to choose a topic and create several pieces based around it? Or focus on just your own work and style? Perhaps you want to keep it really broad and have ‘an exhibition of young people from Bristol’s work’? Either way, a theme is the first thing that you want to decide upon. Just don’t make it too obvious.

Okay. You’ve got your theme and are ready. Let’s start actually creating the work. Before you jump straight in and create the most obvious piece of work related to the theme, take a minute to actually think about it. After coming up with the initial idea of ‘Journeys’ (later to be re-named ‘Wanderings’), the first thing we did was brainstorm all the potential ideas and routes we could take the topic. It means that you can create something a lot more individual and creative.

One of the most important things when putting on an exhibition is to curate it. You need somebody to sit down, look at your space and plan out where things are all going to go. You can’t just rock up on the day and hang things where ever. (Okay, we might have done that, but that’s beside the point). Do you put your colourful pieces in the window? Do you have your sculpture in the corner or in the middle? You may not realise it, but where the pieces go can actually influence your exhibition a lot.

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