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Louisville Visual Art Association Plans Crowdsourced Art Exhibit

LVAA’s new exhibit is curated by clicks. The sixteen artists who will show work in "By the Numbers" were chosen based on web analytics for Artebella, LVAA's online art gallery that promotes a different Kentucky artist every day. Art enthusiasts can sign up to receive a daily email highlighting an individual artist on the website, where the participating artists are archived. Readers can also purchase artwork through the website, and LVAA receives a commission for every sale. Executive director Shannon Westerman says in the nine months since it launched, Artebella has already exceeded its $20,000 sales goal for the year. “It’ll be a group show, but it’s going to show a variety of works, of artists of different ages, ethnicities, and different genders," says Westerman. Artists included in the exhibit are Alex Hernandez, Ann Lawson Adamek, Carlos Gamez de Francisco, Catherine Bryant, Claudia Hammer, Crystal Rae Ludwick, Cynthia Norton, David Schuster, Douglas Miller, Kelly Rains, Kent Krugh, Lea Pate, Stacey Reason, Teri Dryden, Valerie Fuchs and William M. Duffy.Taking the virtual gallery into a physical exhibit space is one step, Westerman says."The primary purpose of Artebella is not to be an online gallery. It’s to brand awareness and exposure of different artists so they, in turn, can have a relationship with different kinds of art patrons, whether it’s buyers, collectors, curators," he says. "I had a woman today who called me who’s a publisher. She’s doing children’s books and she needs an illustrator, and she culled through Artebella looking for illustrators who would be appropriate for her publications." Maybe the next step, he says, is displaying Artebella on monitors at the airport. Westerman wants to see the service continue to evolve."What we’re discovering is Artebella is locally sourced, but we’re getting great response from people out of town. There’s a woman in Mobile, Alabama, and we have no idea how she got on our list. She can’t recall, but she thinks someone forwarded the information to her. She’s purchased two pieces of artwork from Artebella. And so it's just a small sample of the potential it holds for artists as an online gallery," says Westerman. The exhibit opens August 21 at LVAA’s Public gallery (131 W. Main St.).