Saturday, 2 June 2012


A few days ago I received an invitation from an art organization. I quote:

My name is Samantha Frost and I am a freelance curator working with Abraham Lubelski organizing a July 2012 group exhibition as a part of the International Artists at Home & Abroad series at Broadway Gallery NYC in New York. I am inviting you to take advantage of a unique publicity package that includes participation in the NY exhibition, as well as the opportunity to benefit from a full years’ worth of publicity/exposure on the web and in print.

Our partnership with NY Arts Magazine and Art Fairs International will provide you with international exposure to galleries, curators, collectors, dealers, museums, and art patrons reaching a readership of over 20 million annual hits. This offer is the best publicity package available in today's contemporary art market and the artist will retain 70% of any sale made during the exhibition. The fee for this complete one-year publicity package (including the NY exhibition) is $1,900. 

I must say that I was not a little astonished at what it was going to cost me. I wrote back saying I was an amateur and not interested in anything that cost that much.

I then got another mail WITHIN MINUTES offering to let me pay in installments. The lady sounded a bit more desperate than the time before.

She had found me HERE.. How many other prospective customers had she tracked down? I've no idea. Of course, being on any public site means exposure to all sorts of schemes. My second reply and rejection was put in more energetic terms and I didn't hear any more.

What is quite obvious, is that such schemes - if indeed they are not spam or phishing - are in it to make money. Anyone who entrusts money or artworks to these people is taking a big risk. I certainly had no way of checking whether Samantha Frost is legitimized or yet another bluffer.

One way of finding out is to post the content of such mails into Google. Others could also have done so and it's on the cards that proof of authenticy or otherwise will quickly emerge. It works well for any mail asking for money or personal data since they are normally sent in x-thousands to unwitting recipients. I think I'll do that right now!

Result: I used the first paragraph and got only one connection - that is actually a genuine google!!!! It's almost impossible to get just one result to any query. It might be a indication that the offer is genuine. But it might also indicate that others have merely said no and junked the email.

The googled link took me to this blog. I have no idea whether that is positive or negative......

Actually, the wealth of information there suggests that the offer is genuine, but does not guarantee that it is bona fide!

Conclusion: I'm not having anything to do with the venture or any like it. Surfing carpetbaggers might wish to make a note of that!

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