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  • jessica moritz

women in the arts

Updated: Apr 2

This time of the year has come: women history month.

Let's see what metrics tell us about the situation, looking at the different subjects regarding the Art Market in different continents and how women have space to work and succeed-or not.


let's have a look on the Art side so we can see many articles and data related to women, it can be to highlight women in history, raise awareness, educate also but mostly to talk about women and hopefully give guidance to "becoming women " or younger generation to have a better perspective.


First article i found related to the subject according to research and Seo:


Do Women Dealers Represent More Women Artists?

written by Kim Hart and Anna Louie Sussman, december 2017

On Artsy, read full article here



These metrics will first explain the different issues that we have to take in consideration about the Art Market and the different actors that make the scene more or less active.


Some lines from the article that give food for thoughts as they say.



Dealers rarely, if ever, cite gender (or ethnicity, or nationality, or any other marker of identity) as a factor in deciding to represent an artist. That notion is almost universally rejected; it’s always and inevitably about “the strength of the work.”


after Reading this article from 2017, what did i learn ?

The Art market is still managed mainly by white men and the stigma over women potentially becoming mother in their career can have a negative impact in your career.


Women Art dealer, women curator, women art advisor, women editor, women gallery owner, women collector, these are the keys to the future of women in the Arts.

We need to look at the bigger picture to build a better parity in the Arts.





Second Article: Why Is Work by Female Artists Still Valued Less Than Work by Male Artists?

written by Taylor Whitten Brown, Mars 2019

On Artsy, read full article here



So this article is very interesting because it clearly address the big questions such as parity in the Art field, theories of difference and historical context that we can read the situation with facts and statistics.


what to have in mind while reading any article about this subject is that we all have different background, education, and cultural norm that influence us and the market.


Ask question around you and you will understand it from your perspective.

Chose 5 different people, ask them which Artist made them discover Art, which Artist they enjoy the most?

Which artist they would buy?

According to their answer you will have a preview of their opinions and postions regarding women in the Arts.

This is not a test with good and bad answers. The Art Market is not that simple. According to your education, your cultural background, and influence you will -without being conscious - answer with male artist, or male influenced answer because you don't have the different keys to understand that you can chose differently.


About Data and analysis of the Market

third article: Methodology: How We Gathered and Analyzed Our Data on Women in the Art world

written by Julia Halperin & Charlotte Burns

On Artnet, read full Article here

this article is very specific about the data involved and what is collected.

It leads to other articles that develop and analyze these statistics and allow us to have a better reading of the situation meaning the Us Art market from 2008 to 2018.

So let's read between the lines, and see what has improved and what can be done.


facts: Just 11 percent of all acquisitions and 14 percent of exhibitions at 26 prominent American museums over the past decade were of work by female artists. According to a joint investigation by artnet News and In Other Words, a total of 260,470 works of art have entered the museums’ permanent collections since 2008. Only 29,247 were by women.


Did you ever notice while visiting museum or gallery this gap?

11% is such a small number when you understand the size of the market and the money involved.

if you go deeper and talk about women of color in the Arts (Woca) it's even worst.

Something to have in mind while looking at all these numbers; sometimes exhibitions are curated and selected according to the curator and museum or gallery decision;

But think about the donation, the private collection, and gifts.

Having an art collection and sharing it is amazing but the impact on gender equality is like a a silent move.

Next time you are in a museum, look at the different actors of the exhibitions: curators, donors, collections, and if the artworks are owned by the museum or private collections, and list the genders, you'll understand fast that it's mainly male dominated.


Taking another statistic to look at with different perspective

(Courtesy of artnet News and In Other Words at Art Agency, Partners)


Yayoi Kusama, born in 1929, Japan

Louise bourgeois, born in 1911, France

Shinique Smith born in 1971,USA

Catherine Opie born in 1961, USA

Kara Walker born in 1969, USA

Janet Cardiff born in 1957, Canada

Rineke Dijkstra born in 1959, Netherland

Carrie Mae Weems born in 1953, USA