For the past two years Gallery Guichard, located in Chicago at 3521 S. King Drive, has worked with 12 international interns from China attending the Illinois Institute of Technology (IIT). These students, on temporary visas, are receiving their master degrees in marketing, finance and public administration. Most plan to return to China after graduation, while others wish to remain in the USA.
The experience they receive not only helps them complete college requirements, but also provides life- changing experiences through the understanding of contemporary fine art and exposure to diverse cultures outside of their own. The interns learn about contemporary art and many aspects of the gallery business like curation, hanging and installing, handling and wrapping, bookkeeping, social marketing and many other roles intended to give them a well rounded experience. They participate in art exhibitions at the gallery as well as art fairs and festivals. With all of the experience they receive, the most valuable is the ability to interact with artists, customers and staff, creating art spaces, understanding the market value of art and how to market art to increase sales.
Each internship program lasts one semester. One student in particular, Charlene Chen, extended her internship because of the experience she received. Her experience helped her make an important career decision, to become a gallery owner when she returns to China, with the hope to create an international gallery exchange with Gallery Guichard.
Her next assignments in the gallery will be marketing exhibitions and featured artwork through social marketing and preparing the gallery for an art exhibit as a vendor at the National Black MBA Association National Conference Sept. 10 -14, 2013 in Houston, Texas. The exhibit will feature more than 40 works of art by Gallery Guichard resident artists.
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