Art marketplace Artfinder today publishes a report drawing attention to the differences in representation between the high-end art world and its own marketplace, where the gender balance of artists is 48% men, 52% women, with women selling more art than men, faster and for greater total value. Women on Artfinder sell nearly 40% more art, they sell their work 16% faster and for every £1m of art men sell, women sell £1.16m.
By contrast just 1 of the top 100 lots sold at auction in 2015 was by a woman, and none of the top ten richest living artists are women.
Jonas Almgren, Artfinder CEO comments:
“We’ve known for a long time that our artists have pretty much a 50/50 gender balance, which is unusual in the art world. What we didn’t realise was how much passion, emotion and anger this campaign would stir up. Women are still woefully underrepresented in the high-end art world and it’s remarkably overlooked as an issue. One of the biggest problems is a lack of reliable data, so that’s where we’re starting. As well as publishing
our own data, we’re asking the world’s art institutions, museums and galleries to share their data. We know that will be a long and difficult road, but we’re taking the first step by publishing our data, and we hope that others will take on that mantle.”
In the run-up to International Women’s Day on 8th March, Artfinder will write to every major art institution in the UK and the US asking them to share their data, publishing results and responses throughout the campaign. There is also a ‘citizen journalism’ aspect to the project, in which the public are being asked to go to their local institution and count how many works are by men and by women and post them on social media using the hashtag #ArtWorldSexism.
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