There are several ways to exhibit and sell your works of art: galleries, art libraries, open studios, artists' initiatives, artists' societies.
In addition to the exhibition, a gallery will take care of the opening, publicity, and the financial dealings with buyers. In return the gallery receives mediation expenses of 40% or more of the works sold. Galleries affiliated with the Kunstkoopregeling (art purchase arrangement) are able to offer their customers an interest-free credit arrangement.
An increasing number of art galleries have opened in the past few decades. You can find one for every artistic trend and style. The Nederlandse Galerie Associatie (NGA) (Netherlands association of gallery owners) has around 200 members.
Also online, the number of galleries increases. Such as Singulart, Artleader and Blooz Gallery. The curators are always looking for new talent. You can email a digital portfolio to see if they are interested in your work. On exto.nl you can make an 'online gallery' yourself (so not all the galleries are of good quality).
The least expensive way to draw attention to your work is to hold an Open Studio. At an Open Studio the art*ist displays his work in his own studio. This cuts out any middleman expenses. But it is important to have a lot of publicity for the open day and to invite people personally. A variation on the Open Studio is the so-called Kunstroute, or Art Route, in which a number of artists have Open Studio events together and pool their resources, particularly for publicity. In many large cities open studios and art routes are organized annually. Another option is to hire a cheap outside space to organize an exhibition.
Also at art fairs you can exhibit your work. Art fairs show a large number of works from different artists and give the visitor the opportunity to buy works of art. Many art exhibitions are organized in collaboration with galleries, so you can only join via a gallery. Sometimes you need to have participated in art markets or routes prior to the exhibition to qualify for participation in the art fair. Participation in This Art Fair or at the Annual Dutch Art Fair (ADAF) is independent and is therefore possible without being affiliated with a gallery.
Arti*st societies organise (group) exhibitions for their members. Because money also comes from membership contributions and local/regional subsidies, commission is low (30%-40%). The society takes care of publicity, has good costumer relations and therefore usually reasonable sales figures. Some take work in consignment and present themselves as a collective on art fairs. See for example Arti in Amsterdam, Pulchri in Den Haag, Kunstliefde in Utrecht and De Ploeg in Groningen.
Another well-known form of collaboration for visual artists is the artists’ initiative. These are associations or foundations which give participating artists the opportunity to exhibit, take part in projects and productions or present themselves in other ways. Artists’ initiatives are eligible for governmental subsidy through the Mondriaanfonds.