Course blog for American University PERF-570, Fall 2014
Someone already posted about the “Art Reports Back” study by art collective BFAMFAPhD and how the economics of obtaining and arts degree is depressing at best. The study also reveals the disproportionate rate, in comparison to the racial and gender composition of our nation, of people who attend art school and artists who make money from their art being white. In this article from The Washington Post, they discuss how the expensive rate of tuition at art schools and the rather low amount artists make a living on average, makes art school a luxury especially as the wealth and poverty divide in our nation widens.
Some people wonder (or completely neglect to acknowledge) how the arts are deemed as something only for the elite or a luxury. If art is supposed to make commentary about life and greater philosophies, if only one point of view is portrayed i.e. that of someone who could afford a BFA/MFA and manage to live without art sales, art becomes a luxury item created by people fortunate to be able to solely focus on it. This poses a serious challenge for us budding art managers if we choose to be in, or create, organizations that have diverse casts or show artists from diverse backgrounds and engage diverse audiences. If we cannot directly change the cost of tuition at art institutions, the income-gap in our country, or ignore quality artists who simply by mathematics will be white and male, how do we make commitments to diversity or aim to have an institution or organization that reflects the society of our country?