- Courtesy Bravo TV
On August 13th, Bravo will debut Gallery Girls, a docu-series that follows the lives of seven young women vying for recognition in New York’s art world. I’m expecting some catfights, tears, and scandals from this group of wine-sipping, gallery-hopping twentysomethings. It seems like the perfect balance between the hormone-driven antics of Real Housewives with the populist artiness of Work of Art. But, there’s one thing the show won’t have, and that’s me.
Last February, I was approached by Magical Elves to be on Gallery Girls. They’d heard about a sex advice column I’d penned in grad school under the moniker “gallerina with a heart of gold” and asked to meet with me. I agreed to meet up with one of the show’s producers, Tony Bianscano, at a bar in Greenpoint.
Bianscano said they wanted me to play a role similar to Carrie Bradshaw from Sex in the City. I fit the role because I was an aspiring writer who had spent a reasonable amount of time writing about sex, relationships and art. And after watching less than a minute of Bravo’s Gallery Girls trailer, it’s easy to spot how the Sex and the City motif made its way into the final version of the show.
I was then told about the other girls who would be on the show. Many of them were scouted on Craigslist, and didn’t have any art background. When the producer told me I’d have more experience than most of the girls, I had visions of being typecast as the stuck-up bitch.
According to Bianscano, if I did agree to be on the show, I’d be set up with an internship at a gallery. I asked which ones, but the producer hadn’t nailed down any spaces yet. He did mention that he’d been scouting locations in the LES earlier that day. Several of the spaces asked him to leave when he suggested filming a TV show there.
Probably the biggest warning signs where when Bianscano informed me that we’d have to start shooting soon, and asked if I had my own Flip Cam. Also, I shouldn’t expect to get paid because the show hadn’t been picked up by Bravo yet. And there was no contract.
The only person who wanted me to do a reality TV show was my mother. She wanted to watch her daughter on TV but didn’t understand that it would be career suicide. Sure, I’d be invited to cool parties, but I’d never be taken seriously as an art writer. So I declined the role. My resume is much better off without it including televised catfights.