Art Career News January 2016
2016 TRENDS IN THE ARTS AND CULTURE SECTOR
Here are some of the trends we anticipate that will affect employment in the Arts
and Culture sector for 2016.
Leadership Changes. As "Boomers" retire in large
numbers this year (Forbes estimates
more than 3.5 million), arts & culture organizations need to plan for the
changes that will occur as Millennials become managers and Generation Z (those
born beginning 1994) enter the workforce.
In addition to providing leadership and management training and
opportunities to learn and exercise new skills, arts organizations will have to
adapt to the needs and aspirations of these groups regular feedback; peer
decision making; greater flexibility and work-life balance.
Continual Rise of the Artist Liaison Position. As galleries grow more concerned with guiding
the overall narrative and "brand" of their artists' careers and commissions
grow more complex, the role of the artist liaison as distinct from a sales director
or gallery manager has come to the fore. Arts professionals who can
support and understand the studio process, as well as being savvy and astute
enough to engage with clients and recognize a sales opportunity, are becoming
key employees. A blend of skills
- from time and project management to relationship building and
negotiation - are necessary in order to keep artists' schedules on track, and
to meet artist, gallery and client expectations.
Growth of the New Private Museum. With
major collectors looking to shore up their individual legacies, the name above
a wing or room has been joined by a number of entirely new museum buildings,
each with the full roster of required staff and support. As The Broad Museum in Los Angeles and
Damien Hurst's Newport Street Gallery in London open to mixed public and
critical response, the private collection turned public amenity remains a major
feature of the global cultural landscape. Art workers at these
institutions have a dual role - balancing the needs of the audience with the
wishes and demands of the still-living founder and collector.
Celebrities as active on-the-floor participants. A trend as criticized as it is
embraced, 2015 may have been the year when the celebrity participant reached a
flash-point in both popular and critical perceptions of arts &
culture. Actors, musicians, fashion models and other glitterati launched
galleries, debuted shows of their work, presented artists' awards (and accepted
them) and were fixtures at art fairs and museum galas alike. Although much
of this cross-over has met with little critical success, in the immediate
future arts & culture employees may be expected to have an even broader
range of general knowledge regarding media, performance arts and fashion as
the movers and shakers in those spheres continue to make their presence known.
Work-Life Balance: Recognizing the increased demands in the workplace, some arts and
culture groups are addressing work/life balance issues and attempting to be
more respectful of employees and to eliminate "bad" behavior. Efforts
include health and wellness programs and workshops on how to manage stress,
acknowledging the tensions in the environment in which employees work. The next generations of workers will walk
away from screamers and habitual abusers and seek employment in more positive
As a professional at an arts and culture institution seeking to hire staff or
improve the overall organizational structure of your organization, please don't
hesitate to reach out to us for an initial consultation.
As a candidate, let us help you navigate these trends and help you identify and
find your ideal position.
Contact us at 212-779-7059, or visit our website at www.artstaffing.com for more information on our firm and services.
We look forward to hearing from you!
Geri Thomas, President
David V. Griffin, Senior Associate