What if we artists owned our power?
I am reading a book entitled How to Survive and Prosper as An Artist, Selling Yourself Without Selling Your Soul, written by Caroll Michels. This notion of artists needing to own their power comes from her introduction to the book.
Caroll gives examples of artists who are badly dealt with by art dealers and others. When counselling artists, she finds that these situations occur because artists are not aware of their bargaining power. She comments that these unnecessary dilemmas and frustrations are created by middlepeople who have usurped power from artists and by artists who allow their power to be usurped.
"Artists, by the fact that they are artists, have power. Artists provide thousands of nonartists with jobs! Examples of nonartists who depend on artists for jobs include dealers, gallery staff, curators, museum staff, art administrators, critics and journalists, corporate art consultants and advisors, federal, state and municipal employees, teachers, framers, accountants, lawyers and art suppliers. Yet more nonartists than artists make a living from art and nonartists make more money from art than artists! This inequity exists because artists, the "employers", individually and collectively have not yet recognized their power." (Caroll Michels)
Did you have a 'well heck yeah', moment when you read the above quote? Are you feeling some righteous anger surging up? Well folks, I say it is time we take back our power!!!!
[Caroll offers a website of helpful resources here (click the highlighted text) and she also has a website.]