You know that buying from an artist owned and operated gallery may not be right for you. These types of venues do not participate in costly marketing and will not have artists that have published advertising in National Art Magazines or Architects Digest (generally they focus on the local market). They do not have a paid sales staff (artists work the gallery for free), a chic showroom or customized viewing area.
Their operating budget is kept low, and the quality of the work high with a focus on diversity. To become a member of artists owned gallery takes countless of hours of work and investment and the elusive open slot. Artist and their work must be juried in by their fellow members. Take the example above of Alex Porter's work "Big Un." Not many galleries would accept the giant welded sculpture from a former pipe welder.
The sales staff works as a cohesive unit (because after all, we are selling each other's work) and is extremely knowledgeable about their fellow artists and mediums. The gallery operates more like a family business.