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Artists’ emergency: arts policy’s role in the future of artists’ livelihoods

We must see the cultural ecosystem in which every person, every organ­i­sation, every cultural expression, has a legit­imate place.” Francois Matarasso, Let’s use this breathing space wisely, 25 March 2020

Strategic arts policy funding inter­ven­tions premised on equality and co-operation are key to sustaining visual artists’ liveli­hoods over a life-cycle. This text in the Covid19 portfolio combines secondary data analysis with cross-refer­ences to prior and new research to offer six reference points for the economic value of artists’ practices within the arts and creative indus­tries including indication of their income sources in broad terms. It concludes with an argument for vital new struc­tural arts policy and advocacy measures to ensure that many visual artists – not just a few — survive through the immediate period of the Covid19 emergency and during what is likely to be a sustained period of economic recession beyond. 

Read “Artists’ emergency: arts policy’s role in the future of artists’ livelihoods” in full


Enforcement, equanimity and an afterword – thoughts on sustaining fair pay for artists

Intro­duction to fees to artists for exhibiting in public with examples indicating that sustaining such schemes is dependent on widespread and continued accep­tance of the principle and rigorous self-regulation within the sector, and on gaining suitable levels of public subsidy to the visual arts. Three financing options are considered in support of equanimity. An afterword considers whether in a political climate of reduced subsidy to the public sector, some new strategies are needed to finance the arts and artists’ contributions.

Read “Enforcement, equanimity and an afterword – thoughts on sustaining fair pay for artists” in full


Let’s talk about pricing

Being asked a while back to provide some advice to artists on pay and pricing matters for a new website was the generator of this short text. It begins with summarising some of the issues and ends with a few sugges­tions for what artists might do to improve their chances of making a living while steadily moving their art practice forward.

Read “Let’s talk about pricing” in full