Disparities in the Art Community
There is an endless multitude of careers. From art to engineering to social sciences there are so many opportunities for those who choose to act on their ideas. However, there is a career path being targeted. Art. I ask you, what does art mean to you? Maybe it means nothing or maybe it means everything. Regardless, everyone deserves the opportunity to have a life and career they enjoy. We must act to stop this attack on such a beneficial and inclusive subject matter.
For example, Senate Bill 86 in Florida was planning to do exactly that. There is a program in Florida called Florida Bright Futures that pays for student's college tuition if they meet certain requirements. They are certain test scores, a number of volunteer hours, and a particular GPA. This exceptional program has provided a college education to over 725,000 students since its inception. This proposed bill would only allow students going into “market driven” professions to receive this scholarship. How would you feel if you worked your entire school career to receive this scholarship that would allow you an education to improve your life, but you were suddenly forced to change your major to something accepted by society? It is despicable that the Florida government would even attempt to put this into play as it continues to cut school funding. Luckily, it did not pass past the senate floor, but the fact that it got past the first two committees is still a heavy issue. We must act and stand together to save the arts.
I understand that when many think of the arts it is seen as useless and a hobby. That is truly a blatant lie. There are hundreds of art careers. Check out this website for just a glimpse into the multitude of art careers, https://www.studentartguide.com/articles/art-careers-list#:~:text=150%2B%20Art%20Careers%20%E2%80%93%20The%20Ultimate%20List. The reality is art improves mental health, quality of life, and fosters inclusivity. When you are provided with an outlet for the emotions we are all filled to the brim with it can help your mind process them at a higher efficiency. Art therapy is also a profession that helps those struggling with mental health improve themselves. Quality of life is such a subjective term, but creativity fosters accomplishment and purpose. When those enter your life, everything seems brighter. Inclusivity and diversity are so important to manufacture a proper society. Art has so many styles and messages that it can reach everyone and spread a message of importance. Art is a tool to create a better human population.
As we are Girls Give Back, it is beneficial to share some statistics of women in art. 18 major museums in the U.S. found that their collections were 87% male and 85% white. This is unfair to have a majority of white, male artists. All art is beautiful, and every person’s art should have the equal chance to be displayed and shared to the world. According to the Association of Art Museum Directors, "The good news is that in 2005, women ran 32% of museums in the United States, and they now run 47.6%-albeit mainly the ones with the smallest budgets.” It is an improvement that women are having a greater impact in this profession, but quality is important. We need equity and nothing will change my mind on this subject matter. The highest selling female piece of artwork was priced at 14.4 million dollars. Seems like a lot of money, I agree, but the highest selling male piece of art sold for 450.3 million dollars. See the issue? When 820,000 exhibitions across all sectors were examined, only 1/3 of them held women art pieces in their displays. 96% of works sold at auctions are from a man. 41% of the art world’s profit is held in the top .03% of the auction market. No women are involved in that percent. There are unfair advantages based on race and gender in the art world. It is unacceptable and we must educate to create change.
In conclusion, the art world is not equal or equitable. However, these statistics apply in so many other careers. Girls deserve an equal chance. I hope this blog has enlightened you on problems that are actually occurring. All resources are share below so that you can see for yourself. I humbly ask you to educate and raise awareness when you see discrimination and hate in play. Art education is my passion and I refuse to let the art community be failed. We deserve better and will fight for it. If you enjoyed this career readiness piece, let us know another field you would want to be featured. With much love, have a great day <3!