Agora Gallery

Address: 530 West 25th Street, New York, NY,
Phone: (212) 226-4151

2.9/5

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Art Handling 3
Art Knowledge 2
Payment 2
Marketing 2
Personal Management 2
Gallery Management 2

1.33/5

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For a Buyer: This "gallery" has nothing to do with art. The establishment is just another slick sales exploit run by a team of marketeers dedicated to separating one's money from one's pocket. Do not believe the fake reviews - note they're all phased the same.

For an Artist: BEWARE - these schemers want you to pay over $9,000.00 for a year's representation and plus they'll take 30% of whatever the goods sell for... and all this for a mere 20 ft of leased wall space. The problem is the artist PAYS UPFRONT but Agora doesn't know how to price your artwork plus they'll only discuss what they'll do for you AFTER you pay your big non-refundable fee. How else would you define disreputable business practices?
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1.33/5

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These people contacted me unsolicited via my website.
They wanted 50 bucks to "review my portfolio."
I told them that, if they've already been to my site, then they've seen my portfolio already!
This is a VANITY GALLERY, no doubt about it.
There are enormous fees to "promote" your work... in their gallery, and love to tout the "extra" services they offer.
Those extras include putting a few of your pieces on their subpar HTML website. They also promise that you'll be in a "New York publication." (That one made me laugh hardest)
A pamphlet or newsletter printed by your own neighborhood print shop? Why no specificity?
This whole thing stinks.
The gallery itself is in a great location, it shows anyone with enough desperation and cash...and that's frankly the only reason it still lives.
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5.0/5

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Hi, makes me laugh when people think you can expose in Manhattan for free, it's not because you are an artist that basic economics does not apply. There are different business models, if you don't believe in yourself enough as an artist to invest a reasonable amount of money and you wait home that someone will say come at my gallery ,we will pay for everything and take all the risks for you, you will die with your artworks in your basement, 100% guarantee. But if, like in any other business , you work hard, you invest i in yourself, in your promotion, you travel, you knock to closed doors(you dare), they might open another step in your endeavor. Agora Galley is offering good packages to try and help promote artists around the world. Like anything in this world nothing is free nor perfect but they are sincere in their approach, human and passionate about what they do. It's not because they don't sell" my work" that it's their fault, it's the offer and demand. New york city has 66 millions tourists per year, i'd rather invest 3 to 5k in manhattan than spending the same amount for a full locall paper page where i live.Art is a business , like it or not, some people succeed some people fail, if you dont risk anything in life you will stay where you are. How much does it cost for a tennis player to do all tournaments to qualify for a top 50 position, around 100k a year just for traveling, if you are not ready to spend a few bucks to represent yourself, you might be a Picasso but you will die unknown, which is ok too. Don't need to be picasso to enjoy your passion... dont need to be Nadal to have fun playing tennis, but if you want to make a living of your passion, no one will pay everything for you unless you reach a certain status, that's in any field...
By the way I'm not an artist, I'm an entrepreneur but helping a friend , who's an artist reaching it's next "level" , it might not work even when trying very hard but he would certainly regret not investing in himself. Often times people blame other people or their employer, manager or everyone else for not succeeding, what about your responsability to invest in yourselt, make contacts, the secret is often to see yourself where you want to be and take significative actions to reach that goal. Good luck , don't blame Agora, do what you think will bring tou where you want to be! Madame Di Bello is extremelly human and passionate with the artist she represents. Some people are never satisfied of anything, same thing in my real estate business ... even if i would give a house people would day why don't you pay taxes too :-) sorry for my English, I'm from another country and i type all this on the little iphone keyboard
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5.0/5

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My name is Ariel Kahana and I’m the owner of Agora gallery.

I recently came across this page and was amazed by all the negative comments and all the misinformation that is posted here. I took the time to respond to all of the posts on this page (please click the “comments” links) and I hope that you, the informed reader, will also take the time to read my responses and think about the facts before agreeing with anonymous people whose motives are not clear and whose comments are not backed by any facts.

A few facts about Agora gallery:

• We have been in business for more than 30 years.

• We have a beautiful street level gallery space at the heart of the Chelsea art district

• We stand behind what we promise and deliver everything that is in our representation agreement.

• We have a dedicated team of hardworking employees who work very hard to provide our artists with excellent service.

• We do invest in marketing and sales. For example we developed http://www.art-mine.com/skp/ - maybe the good souls that are bad mouthing us on this page can explain to the readers why we invested so much in developing this tool to market the artwork if we have no interest in selling the artwork?

• The gallery was founded by a struggling artist (my late mother) who tried, for a very long time, to get representation at New York’s traditional galleries without luck until in 1984 she decided to open her own gallery, show her work, and provide other artists with the opportunity to exhibit their artwork in NYC.

I can continue and present more facts but prefer to spend my time in a more constructive manner and I urge you as well - instead of reading unsubstantiated comments please come and visit the gallery. See for yourself the professional manner in which the artwork is displayed at our beautiful street level gallery space, meet our friendly and hardworking employees and decide for yourself.

We have been proudly providing our services since 1984 and do not hide behind anonymous posts!

Ariel Kahana
Owner

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1.0/5

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Scam Vanity Place charging artists:

Here are their promo levels:

Basic option $5,450

Standard option $9,250

Premium option $17,850

Premium Plus option $39,500

Solo option $65,500

Ahahahaha! :-)

Stay away.

John Borton



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5.0/5

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My name is Ariel Kahana and I’m the owner of Agora gallery.

I recently came across this page and was amazed by all the negative comments and all the misinformation that is posted here. I took the time to respond to all of the posts on this page (please click the “comments” links) and I hope that you, the informed reader, will also take the time to read my responses and think about the facts before agreeing with anonymous people whose motives are not clear and whose comments are not backed by any facts.

A few facts about Agora gallery:

• We have been in business for more than 30 years.

• We have a beautiful street level gallery space at the heart of the Chelsea art district

• We stand behind what we promise and deliver everything that is in our representation agreement.

• We have a dedicated team of hardworking employees who work very hard to provide our artists with excellent service.

• We do invest in marketing and sales. For example we developed http://www.art-mine.com/skp/ - maybe the good souls that are bad mouthing us on this page can explain to the readers why we invested so much in developing this tool to market the artwork if we have no interest in selling the artwork?

• The gallery was founded by a struggling artist (my late mother) who tried, for a very long time, to get representation at New York’s traditional galleries without luck until in 1984 she decided to open her own gallery, show her work, and provide other artists with the opportunity to exhibit their artwork in NYC.

I can continue and present more facts but prefer to spend my time in a more constructive manner and I urge you as well - instead of reading unsubstantiated comments please come and visit the gallery. See for yourself the professional manner in which the artwork is displayed at our beautiful street level gallery space, meet our friendly and hardworking employees and decide for yourself.

We have been proudly providing our services since 1984 and do not hide behind anonymous posts!

Ariel Kahana
Owner



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5.0/5

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5.0/5

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1.0/5

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It is a well known space rented by the foot to naive, insecure artists who just want to show at any cost. The artists are being played and have to pay for a foot or two on a wall. That is why the paintings are all hung like wall paper, the gallery gets more money per painting. Badly hung, too much money and the artists are being once again used. In this day and age all artists should beware.
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1.5/5

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I ignored the online criticisms of Agora gallery and put it down to tall poppy syndrome as they are arguably the most known gallery in Chelsea, at least the most marketed. In Australia most galleries need to charge their artists as the risk of not covering their overheads is too great.
However after submitting my portfolio and foolishly paying their 'review fee' of $50 USD and eventually receiving an offer of representation, with the invitation to ask any questions; I responded with a few very relevant questions relating to going forward with an exhibition on the other side of the globe from me.
Amazingly, with a one week deadline to accept their invitation, my questions were never answered nor was my concerned follow up email pressing them to reassure me of their professionalism by at the very least responding. Nothing.
They basically took my money, made me wait 3 weeks for a small email and left me high and dry.
Despite the negative reputation regarding their 'vanity' label. They are highly unprofessional and unethical in their dealings with serious artists. I'm disgusted.
Angela Di Bello should be ashamed.
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5.0/5

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Scam? Why is Agora Gallery a scam? They clearly explain the services they provide - no one can argue that they have a real and great looking location - they provide the services that they promise (or at least it seems that way from reading their testimonials page) - they have A+ rating at the BBB - so why do people call this gallery a scam? why don't you think about it as a pr agency/gallery? that's what it is and it seems like they are doing a pretty good job doing that
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5.0/5

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There is so much anger on this page... did any of you people been to Agora Gallery? Great looking space and super friendly and professional people! If you don't want to pay them that is fine but calling them names...
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1.67/5

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Rip-off scam, don't do it. No one who knows anything about art will go near this gallery, they prey on out-of-town artists who think a show in Chelsea is good exposure. No exposure at all is better than this, everyone knows it's a vanity gallery, and their "marketing" consists of taking an ad out in a magazine no one reads anymore. They don't need to do anything else because they make their money from the artists fee and not sales.
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4.67/5

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NYC based gallery - charges a fee from the artists - provides good service
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4.0/5

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The gallery does charge to promote artists, but they also perfectly adhere to the services they say they'll provide. Shows are advertised in Gallery Guide magazine, and get great foot-traffic because of their prime location.
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1.33/5

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The most famous vanity gallery in the US. Stay away at all costs- everyone knows it's a vanity gallery, so real critics, collectors and other dealers avoid it. Agora doesn't need to make money from sales, since the artists are paying to exhibit. Scam.
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4.67/5

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I showed at Agora Gallery a few times. Yes they charge a fee but they are very honest about what they provide and do an excellent job - I even sold a few pieces!
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5.0/5

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Great gallery. Staff is very professional and helpful. Marketing and exposure is thorough and well planned.
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1.0/5

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I've just received an email from the gallery stating they are interested in my work and wish to put it on display.

Problem is... I've got no work to display in the first place and have zero interest in galleries.
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1.0/5

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I had an idea that this was not a true gallery. If a gallery has to charge the artists that tells you the gallery is not confident in it's ability to sell your work. This is how galleries operate! They make money when they sell your work. If a gallery is charging you to be in their space then they don't care if your work sells or if you have talent!
Places like this pray on the desperate artist. Their Yelp page it "too" positive.
The artist has already spent tons of money on art supplies in the process of creating the artwork.
The artist assumes these costs and the gallery assumes the cost of PR and sales!
Don't be suckered in.
If it sounds too good ........
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1.17/5

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As an artist living in South Dakota, painting for myself and not exhibiting commercially I was excited to get an e-mail from a woman named Alexandra Cespedes who worked at gallery in NYC and was interested in the work she found on my website. I talked on the phone to an employee there, and she sounded so excited about my work, even knew the names of individual paintings, that it took a while to realize that they were asking for money. It takes a while looking through their website to realize what they're charging, "starting with $3,850" they don't even state how high they go unless you write them. And even then I considered doing it because it felt like it could be a chance. What finally made up my mind that it was a scam was reading the suspicious and numerous testimonials on their website, mostly written by people with a poor command of English, that seemed written specifically to address my concerns that they were a scam.
http://www.agora-gallery.com/artistinfo/artists_testimonials.aspx
note that none of the artists say they've sold any work, they are just going on about how this was an amazing experience that pushed their career to a new level without saying what that level is.
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Got contacted by Agora gallery, and excited that a Chelsea gallery wanted to show my work until I read through their entire 3 page small print representation agreement. To save everyone else the trouble, here are the rates that they charge for doing you the honor of representing your work. This is absolutely bloody unbelievable (note the price per linear feet)

Basic Representation
• All services outlined in sections A,B,C above
• Ten (10) linear feet of exhibition space
• Eight (8) images of your art on Art-Mine.com
One Year:
[ ] 1 Payment--------------------------------------- $2,950
[ ] 3 Month Payment Plan ------- 3 x $1,025 = $3,075
[ ] 6 Month Payment Plan ------- 6 x $540 = $3,240
Two Years: Includes participation in two exhibitions
[ ] 1 Payment-------------------------------------- $4,950
[ ] 3 Month Payment Plan --------- 3 x $1,725 =$5,175
Standard Representation
• All services outlined in sections A,B,C above
• Twenty (20) linear feet of exhibition space
• Ten (10) images of your art on Art-Mine.com
• Up to 500 Personal color invitation post cards
• Color Press Sheets.
One Year:
[ ] 1 Payment ------------------------------------- $5,250
[ ] 3 Month Payment Plan --------- 3 x $1,810 =$5,430
[ ] 6 Month Payment Plan ----------6 x $950 =$5,700
Two Years: Includes participation in two exhibitions
[ ] 1 Payment------------------------------------- $8,950
[ ] 3 Months Payment Plan ------- 3 x $3,085 =$9,255
Premium Representation
• All services outlined in sections A,B,C above
• Forty (40) linear feet of exhibition space
• Fifteen (15) images of your art on Art-Mine.com
• Up to 500 Personal color invitation post cards
• Color Press Sheets
• Review of your work in a New York publication
• A portfolio of your work will be submitted to two
museums following your exhibition.
One Year:
[ ] 1 Payment -------------------------------------- $9,200
[ ] 3 Month Payment Plan -------- 3 x $3,185 = $9,555
[ ] 6 Month Payment Plan -------- 6 x $1,655 = $9,930
Two Years: Includes participation in two exhibitions
[ ] 1 Payment ------------------------------------- $15,950
[ ] 3 Month Payment Plan -------- 3 x $5,445 =$16,335
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1.0/5

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I have never had the misfortune to show with Agora, (also, everyone in New York knows this, so this is a warning for the out-of-town and the credulous). It is a classic vanity gallery - i.e. they solicit artists to show their work, in exchange for a lot of money - about $3,000 for a "basic package" of a group show, and (rumour has it) $50,000 for a solo show. What the artist gets out of it in theory is exposure in New York/Chelsea, but the reality is that since everyone knows it's a vanity gallery, real collectors avoid it like the plague. And so should artists - there's no reason for the gallery to actually promote the shows they have, since their bills are covered by the exorbitant fees that they charge.
If you get an e-mail from these people - run the other way as fast as you can...
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