Wednesday, December 05, 2012

By the numbers

One of the most notable changes in the art museum and dealer gallery business over the last decade or so has been the growing importance of women as they take on increasingly influential positions. 
But what about the supply side? How do women make out at the coalface exhibiting their own work as artists? In a sample of 20 well known dealers taken from around NZ (the full list is here) the number of women artists represented compared to men is only around three for every seven men on dealer gallery rosters. (The average number of artists in the NZ dealer galleries represented by this sample is around 22 with the range being from a low of six to a high of 47 artists) 
So is the male/female ratio any different when women are the dealers? A bit, but not as much as you might expect. On average, male artists make up 58 percent of the representation by galleries operated by women. Of course there are outliers. Two of the six women running galleries in this sample have more than 50 percent of the artists they represent as women with the highest hitting 58 percent.