Got it for Cheap, a democratic art project
300 kroner for an original work of art. Can you reach 1000? This weekend 16.-18. August is first come, first served when the traveling group exhibition “Got if for Cheap” kicks off at Galleri Golsa in Oslo. The project travels on to Trondheim the following weekend.
Does it take Americans to democratize art? Partners Charlie Roberts and Chris Rexroad are two young artists who have been friends since childhood and collaborated on art projects since high school. Now they run a worldwide group exhibition called “Got if for Cheap”.
Democratic art from the USA: The partners Charlie Roberts and Chris Rexroad run the gallery oo LA in Los Angeles and are the brains behind the project and the group exhibition “Got if for Cheap”, or GIFC, popularly known. Photo: Marte Bjørndal.
Got it for Cheap or GIFC
The two childhood friends run the gallery oo LA in Los Angeles and are the brains behind the project and the group exhibition “Got if for Cheap”, or GIFC, popularly known. It was arranged for the first time in 2016, and in addition to Los Angeles and several cities in the US, artists from countries such as Belgium, France, Norway, Denmark and Sweden are selected to participate.
Over 900 artists are on a list that delivers over 4000 original works of art in all countries where GIFC is held.
– The idea is that there should be high quality art, and then they lower the price so that anyone can buy, explains artist Marte Bjørndal. She and Sofie Vesterøy have both worked hard before the deadline and delivered their artwork on time to Galleri Golsa in Oslo. They represent GIFC in Norway and have already been involved for three years.
– Last year we had more than a thousand artists who participated and the list has grown since, says the gallery.
GIFC 2019 at Galleri Golsa: – The idea is that there should be high quality art, and then they lower the price so that anyone can buy, explains artist Marte Bjørndal.
Over 4000 original works
– Over 900 artists are on a list that delivers over 4000 original works of art in all countries where GIFC is held, and several of these are new and others have been around longer. Several break through, says Bjørndal.
– It is an ingenious and democratic project, Vesterøy adds, and explains that the concept has spread to several countries and cities in Europe. – Then it will be the case that people can afford to buy art, and here they can find some pearls of artwork. Standard formats are A4 – they cost 300. Velvet Ropes is also a group exhibition that is arranged in parallel. Art is sold here in A3 format, which is priced at NOK 1,000, she says.
Marte Bjørndal has delivered a series in A4 which she has called «London drawings». These were created in Rio and then London, where drawing was what she could do on the trip. Photo: Marte Bjørndal.
– How do you as artists respond to the project?
The two artists are first and foremost very happy to have been invited.
– Great fun! Gallery Golsa is a top gallery – a leader in Norway. One is that you are happy to be selected. It is approx. 200 artists selected in Norway, and there are just over 900 in total internationally who participate with works of art. The gallery has also rented a hall in Trondheim where they will be next weekend, so then there will be a new round there, Bjørndal says.
– I think it is so great that it is an international project at the same time as it is a low threshold. It reminds me of going to a music store where you buy LPs. You browse through various curated works of art, says artist Sofie Vesterøy.
Norwegian and international artists
“GIFC’s goal is to make art purchases accessible to all people and to provide artists with a platform where they can sell their works and be exposed to an audience worldwide.”
Last year, Galleri Golsa sold 1,200 drawings by Norwegian and international artists, because the system also allows artists who have received a clear signal to participate to be able to send works of art to other countries. In a Facebook post from the same year, sausage sales are announced in the backyard, and the possibility of paying with Vipps. At last year’s Facebook event, the gallery has registered 2,500 interested people, compared to 953 the year before.
The GIFC concept has spread to several countries and cities in Europe. Then it will be the case that people can afford to buy art.
– I think it is so great that it is an international project at the same time as it is a low threshold. It reminds me of going to a music store where you buy LPs. You browse through different works of art. And they are curated by the gallery, says Vesterøy.
Sofie Vesterøy’s contribution to this year’s GIFC at Galleri Golsa touches on erotic art, which she finds interesting.
Visual art in many categories
High quality is a key word for the international group exhibition “Got if for Cheap”.
– What kind of art do we want to see there?
– I have delivered drawings in A4. I started drawing a lot when I traveled to Rio with my boyfriend, and drawing is something you can do along the way. And I think it has been so evolving for painting and larger works. Drawing is absolutely essential, Bjørndal believes.
– It can also be painting, Vesterøy adds. – You deliver what you want as long as it is fixed and not mounted objects on. I think people have tried a lot of strange things, she laughs. But emphasizes that it must be manageable for the galleries, the enormous amount of artwork that comes in. She herself has delivered a mixture of drawing and painting.
It is approx. 200 artists selected in Norway, and there are just over 900 in total internationally who participate with works of art. Gallery Golsa has also rented a hall in Trondheim where they will next weekend.
Marte Bjørndal has delivered a series in A4 which she has called «London drawings / The Project Description». It is a black and white series in charcoal, ink, pen, pencil that she started on in Rio, which has been worked on in London. An abstract cartoon without dialogue where elements of the cartoon format are taken out in A4. In the A3 formats there are collages. Something she has done before on what she describes on such small surfaces. They are also a taste of an exhibition the artist has in store.
Marte Bjørndal, collage from the series «The Project Description». Photo: Marte Bjørndal.
Awe for the mission
Vesterøy went back to a series she worked on ten years ago, to a character based on a Facebook profile picture. She calls the series “Priceless”, and deals with what she experiences as an identity-crisis-ridden time.
Both artists have awe for the assignment, and the process is the same as in any other exhibition. Questions such as “who am I”, “who am I as an artist”, arise. Or good time and then time pressure before the deadline. Everything characterizes the process many artists go through before showing their work. But now all the work is delivered, and ready to be exposed to the world.