Although the status of the work of female artists may seem like a simple case of discrimination, in reality, the problem is much more complicated. Before I begin looking at the more complex issues behind the problems facing female artists, I thought it would be interesting to look at some facts and statistics so that the discrepancies can be put into perspective. In November 2007, the New York Magazine did some calculations and published some rather revealing figures relating to the number of female artists represented at several major art institutions. At the time, only 15% of the artists whose work was on show as part of the permanent collection of the Whitney Museum of American Art were female. The 2007 Venice Biennale could only manage a 76% male/24 % female split while Art Basel Miami Beach managed slightly better with a 73% male/27% female split. Worst of all was the Frick Collection which had a collection that was a mere 1% female artists.
well this is depressing and sobering.
I came from a boyz club as you know. working in IT as a Project Manager I had to have my own pair of balls safely ensconced in my purse (and sometimes displayed on my desk). I was the perfect corporate-female from my powerbun to my suits- trying to never let a whiff of femininity (read: weakness) show.
you would think that the art world would be about the art, you would think it would be above such petty things in it’s long and glorious life. but no. I covered the discrepancies in the Guggenheim back in 2006. it seems that little has been done since. I look forward to reading the rest of the series and may touch back on it.
oh and don’t worry abut me, I am used to playing in a boyz club. I still have those balls around somewhere and I am not afraid of a challenge- especially one presented to me for the paltry reason of my gender.