Why an Art Gallery is Never Just About What’s On Its Walls
By Yu-Kai Lin, Director of KAI LIN ART
10 years. 500 artists. 97 exhibitions. 27 states. 7,900 cups of coffee, and countless art-filled friendships, I’m so enthused to celebrate a major milestone this year with our Kai Lin Art family.
For 10 years, Kai Lin Art has been a gallery that embodies our mission to cultivating creativity, connection, and conversation through art. We are dedicated to promoting emerging and established artists in the Southeast and beyond. We do this through a uniquely accelerated exhibition calendar with new exhibits every six to eight weeks.
If you had asked me back in 2008 where we’d be ten years from now, I might not have imagined the Kai Lin Art that it is today, with our expansive network of major institutions, museums, corporations, consultants, private collectors, and artists.
The only thing that remains constant is change, and because I consider myself a student and mentor of life, below are eight lessons I’ve learned during the last decade of building our community:
- Apply art as an equalizer: The hierarchical perception that art is something unattainable and needs a thesis to be understood is a misconception that should be diffused. Art is all around us, for all of us to share and to be celebrated. If you have a wall, you need art.
- Make creating a way of life: Everyone is creative, and we are all here to create. Everyday, we get the opportunity to create what we want to build in our lives so that we can feel a sense of connection, joy, and improvement.
- Find your tribe, build your tribe, expand your tribe: In our hyper-connected world we often don’t stop to realize that we are all a part of a larger ecosphere. We are spokes of a wheel and our lives influence all those in our sphere.
- Connect: Every connection, small or large, leads to more connections. Oftentimes we tend to discount the trivial conversations we have on a daily basis. Every encounter is an opportunity to build a more expansive network. Be mindful of how you choose to interact.
- Value relationships: The purpose of a gallery is so much more than just a space to collect art. We are continually building relationships and championing artists, nourishing one another so that creativity can flourish. Kai Lin Art is four walls containing and fostering the environment for growth. Besides exhibitions, we nurture community engagement through nonprofit events, fundraising, and celebrating life’s milestones.
- Make struggle a part of your progress: It’s only through struggle that we can attain success. Through the routine of our daily practice, I’ve discovered that success is not a destination but rather made up of many small victories. We grow through obstacles, and discover opportunities through challenges.
- Create the right environment: Everything communicates. For example, in preparation for every exhibit, we are collectively puzzle-solving. With anywhere between 40 to 80 pieces of art to curate during any given cycle, we set the intention to curate mindfully, so that from the moment you walk through our doors, the reception feels effortless.
- Be flexible: We have found success through adapting to the changing tides of our ever-evolving world. The more we hang on to things, the more elusive they become. The more we let go, the more opportunities we have for exploration and abundance.
Building Kai Lin Art has been and continues to be one of my most rewarding experiences.
We hope to see you at our upcoming 10 year exhibition of “Radiate” featuring 75 artists on Friday, November 16th from 7-10pm and running through January 4th, 2019.
For more on our gallery please visit us at kailinart.com or 404 408 4248 or [email protected]