2012-13 Catalog

Decorative graphic

Offering Description

Working Artists: The Business of Creativity and Art


Spring 2013 quarter

Tom Womeldorff economics , Lisa Sweet printmaking, ceramics, drawing
Fields of Study
business and management, economics and visual arts
Preparatory for studies or careers in
arts administration, business, visual art, political economy and economics.

What does it mean to be a working artist? How does the need to make money influence our artistic expression? Are artistic freedom, authenticity and purity of expression inevitably tarnished once art is produced in anticipation of sale? From the buyer's perspective, what exactly is being bought? Is it the pure aesthetics of the object or is it the name of the artist being purchased, or even an intimate relationship with the artist herself? How do the artist, the gallery and the buyer determine the appropriate price? What roles do galleries and other intermediaries play in uniting the artist with the connoisseur? These are not new questions. In fact, artists such as Michelangelo depended on patronage; their artistic expression was defined and constrained by those paying them to be artists. Today this process reaches into every corner of the globe; Australian aborigines, for example, have rescaled their art to easily fit in suitcases of their tourist buyers.

We will explore these issues in this program, designed for students interested in the intersection of art and business. Our focus will be the economic, cultural and production dynamics involved in making a living as an artist or entrepreneur in the art world. We will critically explore the commercial relationships and market transactions among artists, gallerists, collectors and patrons.

This program is not a preparatory course on how to make a living as an artist, on marketing strategies, or establishing portfolios and promotional materials.

Artists who sustain life-long artistic practice and make a living in the process do so by undertaking daily--often uninspiring--practices. We will similarly engage in daily practice as artists in business, developing skills in observational drawing and personal finance. Our regular rigorous practice will serve both as metaphors for the daily work of artistic production, and as opportunities for improving foundational skills necessary for the business of art.

In addition to seminar, lecture, workshops, writing and exams, each week will include twelve hours in drawing and personal finance. Sharpen your pencils, grab your calculators and join us, 8:23 am sharp.

Online Learning
Enhanced Online Learning
Greener Store
Special Expenses
$40 for drawing supplies.
Offered During

Program Revisions

Date Revision
February 20th, 2013 Fee has been removed; special expense for drawing supplies has increased to $40.