Art Fair Insiders

Call for Artists, Making Money at Juried Art Fairs, Craft Shows and Festivals

I've checked through the blogs, and I've found a couple of companies mentioned that I plan to contact, but I welcome any other suggestions on this topic.  I'm interested in comparing a yearly insurance policy for art fairs against buying insurance for a single event.

Originally I contacted the agent who has our homeowner's policy and discovered that what State Farm offered was not only too expensive to be practical, but it also had a whopping deductible that pretty much made the policy pointless.

However, yesterday I was happily sitting behind my tent on a glorious autumn day when much to my horror, the tent behind me lifted up and started to roll backward in my direction.  It was a tiny gust of wind that took it.  My immediate reaction was to fling my arms out to protect the artwork in the back of my booth (naturally the expensive stuff!), with no thought to the fact that one of those pointy legs could just as easily have impaled me as knocked things over.  Thankfully the stupid tent was stopped from blowing any further when it ran into a small sign and bush between our tents.  I decided to revisit the insurance question seriously this time. 

This was a lesson to the show coordinator who'd already had word with the artist about her sorry lack of weights.  It won't happen ever again at this show.  But other things can happen, and weights aren't the sole prevention of all issues.  This is the second show I've been to in the past few months that has seen blowing tents. 

So as long as there are idiots in the world, the rest of us need insurance, I guess.  I welcome input and suggestions as to what companies to contact.  I have looked into Specialty Insurance Agency and ACT Insurance Program.  Any others? 

Thanks in advance.


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Comment by Christine Hauber on October 10, 2011 at 9:46pm
Make sure they cover you from show to show. Most don't. RLI does as it understands the unique life we have as traveling artists.
Comment by Sheila Papaioannou on October 10, 2011 at 8:21pm

We have a policy with Specialty Insurance Agency/Vendors Of The U.S. for $360 per year for the following coverage:

Each Occurrence $2,000,000 (bodily injury & property damage to others)

Damage to Rented Premises $300,000

Personal & Advertising Injury $2,000,000

General Aggregate $4,000,000

Products – Completed Op. Agg. $4,000,000

Medical Expenses $5,000


(emergency medical) (the most the policy will pay out during the policy year) (the most the policy will pay out during the policy year) (hurting someone's feelings) (to rented premises)
Comment by Bradley R Cross on October 10, 2011 at 4:07pm
I got a rider on my business insurance called "inland marine", cost me $100 for $20,000 coverage while away from my bricks and mortar business building.
Comment by Lawrence Cimaglio on October 10, 2011 at 1:21pm

I have State Farm Insurance and it costs me about $260 a year for $1 mil coverage for my entire company.  Not just shows.  So when a show wants "additionally insured" I just contact my agent and they send me the completed form... no extra charge.  Now, I view this type insurance as catastrophic.  Wipe out insurance.  You basically don't want to file unless it is really bad unless it is your neighbor's fault.  Then you can file and the insurance company will go after them for negligence.  When they have to pay a $2,000-$3,000 insurance claim, they may decide to pay attention to what being in business is about.  We are not just artists, we are also business owners and we need to make sound business decisions like product safety, display safety......


Comment by Karole Bowlds on October 9, 2011 at 6:10pm
RLI Insurance- good policy, covered while travelling to/from shows, at the shows and home studio also theft, liability, etc. Great prices

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