As someone who has an interest in art but doesn’t come from a traditional art background, I was surprised when Gallery Aferro took me on board as an intern. I was ready to learn everything about artistry, the history, the practice of being a creative, and share in our mutual appreciation of art. I soon realized that it wouldn’t be as dreamy as I had hoped for. There are plenty of opportunities for you to indulge your creativity, from interactions with artists, seeing art daily, and attending different events, but being here is much more than just the creative side. It’s a romantic idea to think that working at a gallery is always going to be a grand spectacle, but I think what I have grasped most out of my time here is what it takes to run an art gallery and a non-profit.
As an intern, you get to see the ins and outs of the organization you are working with and how the team works together to manage all the moving parts, and there are plenty of moving parts. From the first day, you realize that collaboration is key, and you’ve got to reach out to grow your network because your network can be vital to your overall mission. However, the people you work with can be the reason why something is successful or falls flat, and sometimes you learn that the hard way. There is so much happening behind the curtain to create the product that is Gallery Aferro, and before my time here it was something I never had an appreciation for.
Sometimes it’s frantic, other times it’s slow, and you’re lucky if things go smoothly, but I think that’s part of the appeal of Gallery Aferro. Gallery Aferro may not be what you expect from a traditional gallery, but that is a testament to their ability to stick to their vision of what they want from themselves. Just the fact that they took me on as an intern shows that they embrace outside perspectives, and that’s cool.