DEFINITION of 'Gallerist'

A gallerist is an owner or operator of an art gallery. Gallerists buy and sell art works, and often focus on higher end pieces that carry premium prices. The job responsibilities range from the technical, such as how to display art works, to operational, such as keeping the gallery running properly. 

BREAKING DOWN 'Gallerist'

Gallerists are responsible for the art works shown in the gallery, but may work with curators and art dealers to determine which pieces to show. The gallery may specialize in particular genres of art or periods of time, or they may include several different types of art, allowing buyers to see a range of different pieces in one location.

Education and Required Job Skills

Buyers and sellers expect someone with expertise to be assisting them when evaluating a particular work of art, so gallerists need to be well-versed in the art they are selling. This knowledge may come from a formal education in art history, or the gallerist may have been a museum curator or worked in auction houses in the past. A gallerist should know how to price their inventory so it will sell, but not be undervalued. Keeping up with the current art trends and markets is very important when it comes to valuing art. Some gallerists are able to determine whether a particular piece is authentic or a forgery, and can identify the artist of an unsigned piece based on the techniques used to create it.

To be a successful gallery owner, one must also be able to run a business, including keeping accurate financial records, paying taxes, managing employees and tracking inventory. Those without business savvy may be more fit to work for another gallerist, where they can use their art knowledge without worrying about the business side of things.

Where the Term Gallerist Comes From

Gallerist is a relatively new term. It was most likely coined to avoid any negative connotations associated with other names for the position—art dealer, or art broker. A gallerist is more likely to be seen as someone who supports or represents artists who create the works shown in the gallery, rather than someone whose main goal is to sell art. The term itself may have derived from the French word, "galeriste," which is often used by top gallery owners to distinguish themselves from other dealers, or the German words for a male or female gallery owner, "galerist" or "galeristin."

RELATED TERMS
  1. Sotheby's

    Sotheby's is one of the world's largest auction houses and brokers ...
  2. Annual Renewable Term (ART) Insurance

    A form of term life insurance that offers a guarantee of future ...
  3. Innocent Purchaser For Value

    An innocent purchaser for value is someone who unknowingly purchases ...
  4. Investment Vehicle

    Investment vehicles are the choice of investment an individual ...
  5. Owner Earnings Run Rate

    Owner earnings run rate is an extrapolated estimate of an owner's ...
  6. One-Man Picture

    A one man picture is when a security's bid price and ask price ...
Related Articles
  1. Managing Wealth

    Fine Art Can Be A Fine Investment

    Understand how to identify Michelangelo from macaroni art before you make an investment in the fine arts. Learn the appraisal process to find a worthy asset.
  2. Financial Advisor

    How to Value Art and Dodge the IRS on Death Taxes

    Appraising artwork can be a very inexact process, and an estate could face penalties from the IRS for undervalued works. Here's how to best price art.
  3. Investing

    EA: How Electronic Arts' Stock Price Rose 10% in 6 Months

    After a dip at the start of the year, Electronic Arts' stock price has climbed to a new record high in the first six months of 2016.
  4. Tech

    Auction to Offer Fractional Stake in Warhol Work

    A blockchain platform is offering a Warhol painting to investors interested in partial ownership.
  5. Insights

    Economy: Liberal Arts Grads Outearning Tech Mavens

    Recent data show that liberal arts majors may earn more over their careers than computer scientists
  6. Financial Advisor

    Top 5 Places to Find and Meet Potential Wealthy Clients

    Personal connections with affluent people can grow a business quickly. It costs money to join the right organizations, but your new connections should pay off.
  7. Managing Wealth

    Planning a Cheap Vacation to the Most Expensive Cities In The World

    These smart tips won't make your whole vacation free, but they will help you shave expenses – and have a better time!
  8. Financial Advisor

    Diversify with These Four Alternative Assets

    In times of market volatility, investors add alternative assets to their portfolios--highly illiquid, but profitable investments like art, land or precious metals.
  9. Investing

    Activision Blizzard Vs. Electronic Arts: Tale of Two Gamers in 2016 (EA, ATVI)

    Learn how Electronic Arts and Activision are using different strategies in attempts to dominate the shifting market for video games.
  10. Investing

    3 Big Cap Winners: How Revenues Are Fueling These Stocks

    Investors might find gains in large cap stocks with strong fundamentals.
RELATED FAQS
  1. How much working capital does a small business need?

    Learn about the three primary factors that determine how much working capital is needed by a small business, including business ... Read Answer >>
  2. How much renters insurance do you need?

    Learn how much renters insurance you need to replace your belongings and how to calculate exactly how much is necessary to ... Read Answer >>
  3. Why working capital management matters

    Learn about a company's working capital, and why good working capital management is essential to maintaining a company's ... Read Answer >>
Trading Center