Denton’s Online Gallery

****features story written for North Texas Daily at UNT*****

The Denton Gallery is a new gallery with a twist, it’s online-based. This online gallery gives Denton and DFW area artists a chance to start their career as artists with some help.

The gallery isn’t only online; they also showcase artist’s work in plenty of local businesses, switching the art every month.

The art displayed online and in businesses is picked by Gallery Director Mason G. Doering. Doering was previously a tax intern for two years and has been the gallery director since August of 2016.

The gallery started out with friends Doering and Quanah Cruz, head of planning and development, knew and has grown to picking from submissions from local artists.

“Watching it [the gallery] take off is really cool,” said Doering.

He, along with the two other people that run the gallery, rotate the displays and tailor the artwork to the businesses.

Some businesses want the art to fit their aesthetic and others just want to show and have local art around them.

The primary goal for the gallery is to create revenue for the artists, what they want to do comes first.

Social Media and Marketing Director Lauren McMichael will talk with the artists to find out what they want to do, where they want to have their work and if they want to sell prints or just have their work up on the gallery.

Lauren, 23, joined the gallery in January of 2017 and is a media arts major in RTFV at UNT.

McMichael ensures that the art has a presence online, posting on Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter a couple of days throughout the week.

Lauren said it’s a pretty big deal for the artists.

“We definitely are working towards opening up the ability to showcase pieces at local shops,” McMichael said.

The gallery likes to have a strong emphasis on being local, but hasn’t turned away artists from out of town either.

For the artists, the benefit seems to be huge, having their work in Jupiter Coffee House and other local businesses or just having their work up online in a way that makes them very discoverable.

The gallery asks for what contact information and social media information they want to share when putting together a small bio about the artists and the work.

Current featured artist Stephen Harcus, 29, thinks the gallery is a great idea and great service.

Harcus doesn’t have a big art background, he’d always been interested in art and his mother was always very artistic. Although he isn’t majoring in art, Harcus paints as if he’s been doing it his whole life – which isn’t false.

After serving in the in the Army and not doing anything artistic for the six years he served, he started painting again in 2016. Harcus said the gallery makes him feel validated and that it helps push him to keep painting.

Since having his work up on Denton Gallery, Harcus has had an increase in followers on Instagram and Facebook. He’s talked to and been in contact with people who he would’ve never talked to before.

The gallery provides opportunities for people to find out who he is and what kind of work he does. He’s even been inspired to do a raffle for a free portrait on his Facebook account

Harcus said that having specifically for Denton, having a physical gallery is difficult but what the gallery is doing right now for the community is great and they are doing the right thing.

The gallery doesn’t just support artists who are under the fine art category.

They also support photographers, showing their work online and in person. They also promote their services – being able to book a photographer for anything you might need.

The homepage for the gallery showcases a featured artist, photographer and musician(s). It also lets you know where to find art on display and has a newsfeed for fashion from Nuview Magazine.

Denton Gallery plans on creating a YouTube channel very soon to record interviews with artists and filming shows of local bands and performers.

McMichael said the gallery is very excited about collaborating with the artists and bringing the hub of Denton together to create even more art.

The gallery is run by people who see potential in the Denton art scene and want to see if flourish – regardless of their backgrounds.

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