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Sarah Griffin: The Gallerist Who’s Repping the Unrepresented
Episode 23619th September 2023 • Not Real Art • Crewest Studio
00:00:00 00:57:40

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If you’re a longtime listener of our podcast, you already know NOT REAL ART strives to make art accessible to everyone—not just a privileged few. Today’s guest shares a similar mission: As the co-founder of UNREPD, a cutting-edge L.A. gallery that seeks to represent the underrepresented, Sarah Griffin offers a safe space for artists to sell their work without the pretense that comes with typical “white cube” galleries. “As long as we're doing what feels great, what we like, what we're excited about, that's how we stay on the right path,” she says. 

In today’s podcast episode, host and NOT REAL ART founder Scott “Sourdough” Power sits down with Sarah Griffin to discuss the consultant’s ongoing work with marginalized artists and communities. “People have been told that there's a ‘right’ way to do [art],” she says. “Somewhere along the line, people are told that there's a way to make real art. There's a way to make good art. There's a way to look at art. There's a way to understand art. This is what you're supposed to feel about this artist because this is a good artist—all of that is bullshit. None of that is real.”

Sarah co-founded UNREPD in 2019 after she met Tricia Benitez Beanum, an estate sale specialist and interior stylist who owns the Pop Up Home vintage showroom. The two quickly bonded over their shared vision to advance the careers of overlooked artists by introducing them to a new collector base. “[Tricia and I] are both outsiders,” Sarah says. “Neither of us came through the art world. We think that that works to our benefit because we have something a little bit different to say.” 

In this episode, Sarah explains how UNREPD sets itself apart from the cold, unfriendly galleries that intimidate artists and buyers alike. She also shares advice for emerging artists and waxes poetic about the artists who call UNREPD home. Don’t miss our conversation with a true trailblazer, gallerist Sarah Griffin.

Key Points From This Episode:

  • How Sarah and Tricia discovered their mutual passion for representing the unrepresented. 
  • The different perspectives that they bring to the art world as “outsiders.”
  • Why she believes that art should be about feeling, not knowing.
  • The “buy it because you love it” approach that she takes with collectors.
  • Reframing art as a necessity, not a luxury.
  • How to find high-quality, original, affordable art that fits any budget.
  • The special place that Chicago holds in Sarah’s heart.
  • Overcoming the unique challenges that come with running a gallery like UNREPD.
  • Ways that UNREPD sets itself apart from typical “white cube” spaces.
  • Highlighting some of the incredible artists that Sarah is working with.
  • Insight into how UNREPD has built its stable of artists.
  • Why Sarah emphasizes that there is no “right” way to make or consume art.
  • The role that relationship management plays for gallery owners.

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