Virginia Dampsta – stay away
Virginia Dampsta is a London based art agent and former gallerist. She knows many people in the art world but you realise her connections to these people are skin deep and her ‘clients’ are far and few in-between. She will let you down as an agent with her false promises and excuses. Invest your money elsewhere.
Virginia used to run a gallery in London named Riflemaker with a man named Tot Taylor. They showed some of my work right as I finished graduate school. While they sold a handful of pieces, it took me close to 6 years to get paid in full and have my other pieces returned, and that only happened once I hired a lawyer to write them letters threatening legal action. Virginia and Tot can be very professional and charming, they can be great curators and art dealers too, but for whatever reason they often choose not to be and leave artists feeling disappointed and taken advantage of.
I was approached by her as well. I did some research but didn’t see very much about her online for how connected she claimed to be. We ended up chatting over the phone and when she told me her “fee” I was concerned. Then she sent me a contract that states some extravagant terms, such as how she would take a percentage of sales on top of the 50% a gallery she connects you with would take. She was very pushy about starting immediately and getting paid right away. It felt very off so I declined.