Having food or refreshments at your Art Show is an excellent contributor to keeping your guests lingering about, studying your artwork and talking with other potential buyers.
I have been to quite a number of art shows that are held in a public building which was nothing more than a huge room with walls. Someone greeted you when you walked in and said good-bye when you left. They set in chairs behind a fold-up table. You walked around the room and in less than four minutes you were back outside.
That is the opposite of what you want.
You want linger.
You want people comfortable, happy, talking, intermingling.
Refreshments help achieve this…….a lot.
Plan your refreshments carefully. You’re not putting out a meal or holding a hoe-down.
I remember my first art show. I thought it would be so cool to order this six foot wide pizza.
It was cool.
People talked a lot when it was delivered with all the fanfare the delivery dude could muster. But I was ill prepared to handle it, nobody assigned to managing food and I had to stop selling and devote my time to managing that crazy, cool six foot pizza. Never again.
Plan your refreshments and drinks. Be conscious of healthy habits.
Fruits, cheese and nuts along with a vegetable platter is often an excellent choice. A Deli platter along with an assortment of whole grain breads goes over well.
Make sure you have a place to store the food the night before and a place to put the food out for easy access during the show.
Think about the condinements, paperware, plasticware, disposals, etc…. you’ll need.
I’m mixed on the idea of serving wine. It wouldn’t hurt, but remember you’re on a budget so you won’t buy really nice wine in bulk. But any good wine shop will work with you to come up with a selection of inexpensive wines that your guests will enjoy and not ruin your budget. I’m dead set against beer and cocktails at the Art Show.
Again, the objective is sales.
Most importantly you’ll need a helper that will manage the food and the serving during the Art Show. Your job is with the guests, not serving. This is your one chance to make money selling your art for quite a few months so don’t waste your time with the refreshments during showtime.
Here’s a quick check list for your refreshments
Food. List the items that will be served.
Drinks. List the items that will be served.
Wine. List the items that will be served.
Table for the refreshments.
A cooler or refrigerator for cold drinks and perishable foods
Container for ice during the Art Show
Cream, Sugar, Sugar Substitute
Serving Dishes and Trays
Responsible Helper to Manage food storage/access/serving
Helpers for setup/serving/cleanup
Plenty of trash cans and trash bags.