Nan DeVincent-Hayes, Ph.D
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in the Art Field"
Everyone wants to be or thinks they are an artist, and for some,
this will happen, but for others, it'll remain no more than a dream.
Artists and those working in the art field live rugged lives,
where survival is almost Darwinian in nature.
Although the profession is broken down into many categories,
for brevity's sake, this article will divide it into artists and
workers of art.
There are several different kinds of artists but the most
recognized ones are performing artists (dancers, actors, musicians,
and the like), literary artists (writers, poets, playwrights, and so
on), and visual artists (painters, sculptors).
There are some categories of artists that are difficult to
classify, such as architects, photographers, film/videographers, and
even those who make use of computers to create high-tech art, as well
as those who make hand-made objects or crafts.
Additionally, artists use a variety of media to invent their form.
Such media might be oil, acrylic, or watercolor paints; chalk,
pastels, charcoal, ink, pencil; clay, steel (of all kinds), wood,
lucite, plaster, porcelain, marble, and so on.
The final form could result in any number of types: Collages,
iconographs, paper, murals, pottery, structures, lyrics, books,
computerized images, and so on. Artists
are always looking for a new medium to create in that results in a new
form or end product. Too,
each artist has his or her own style which might be abstract,
surrealistic, impressionistic, or realism, or any variation of these.
Their style might be do to their schooling, the movement of the
time (Dadaism, Cubism, Pop, etc.), or the influence of mentors and
masters. In any case,
artists, then, are people who create--hands-on--something new out of
something old or something old out of something new, or something
different out of what hasn't existed before.
Unlike hands-on artists, there are other equally well versed
workers in the field who--though they may also be artists in their own
right--concentrate on the business end.
Three examples of such opportunities include:
sells art, and advises artists, art dealers, gallery owners,
collectors on art. Though
a college degree isn't required, it is highly encouraged.
A thorough knowledge of art, art trends, emerging artists is
needed, along with the ability to discern what will sell in the field. Consultants make anywhere from a few thousand dollars per
year to six figures.
Museum or Gallery Executive Director:
manages the entire business--from setting policy, developing programs,
to handling staff, as well as providing advertising, financial,
artistic, and social direction, along with supervising all personnel
and projects, and administering company plans, benefits, and perks.
This position also designs and implements fund-raisers, and
serves as a leader in the community on art matters.
Much writing is also involved in this job, and a variety of
personnel report to this position, such as fine arts consultants,
curators, conservators, PR directors, and so on.
An advanced college degree is needed, and salary begins around
$50,000, depending on the size of the museum or gallery.
responsible for creating art collections and interpreting them to the
public, as well as installing or laying-out these collections within the
physical constraints of a building's rooms.
They also set up temporary exhibits with specific themes or
motifs, and handle the rental of artworks, and the educating of the
public about the collections. Curators
earn anywhere from the high-twenties to over a hundred-thousand dollars
annually. An advanced
degree in art (with a degree or experience in business) is needed.
Other art careers include art agent, art writers, preparators,
museum registrar, museum conservator, archivist, art dealer, gallery
owner, and others. The
field is wide open, and opportunities continue to grow.