I can’t tell you how many truly awful letters I’ve had to read in my life. As a former administrative assistant, I was responsible for all the unsolicited submissions to a major New York museum. Artists and collectors all over the country (and abroad) wrote to have their work considered for display or acquisition, and to be honest the decision frequently rested more on the quality of their cover letter than on their work _ which, romantic dreams aside, rarely if ever sells itself.
Guidelines for Names and Titles: The salutation should typically use the person's last name, along with a "Mr." or "Ms." In general, avoid using "Mrs." or "Miss" unless you are certain of how the woman wants to be addressed. When in doubt, default to using "Ms."