Artist and OVAC intern Kelley Lunsford interviewed gallery owner Tom Farris to learn more about his work, how he selects artists, and more. Farris runs Standing Buffalo Indian Art Gallery & Gifts at 106 E Main in Norman. The second (of 3) section of the interview is focused art Sales and the future:
KL: What impacts the sale of a piece of art?
TF: Find the right buyer. If you can find the right person who falls in love with the piece they'll want to take it home. I'm always happy to make matches like that, to know someone is buying a piece that they will love forever is really fulfilling.
The artists who exhibit in my gallery are friends, some of them very close friends. I enjoy having that close relationship with my artists, knowing them well gives me more depth in the knowledge of their work. This allows me to be able to convey that familiarity to potential buyers, who I find, really enjoy knowing as much as they can about the artists and pieces they are collecting.
KL: What is your next big challenge? What’s on the horizon for Tom Farris?
TF: Right now my focus is maintaining the gallery, we're still a young business and I'm trying to build and grow it into a long term fixture. In conjunction with that, I'm always considering new and unique ways to get people interested in Native American art, whether it be through events or different artists. And finally, my ultimate goal with this project is to create a viable market for Native American art sales in Oklahoma. So many Oklahoma Indian artists feel they have to go to Santa Fe to sell their work, I'd like to bring the buyers here, after all Oklahoma is “Native America”, what better place to buy Native American art?