Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Happy, happy joy, joy

Over the last few months we have been asking the artists we meet one simple question. Are you happy? Our findings have now been compiled and we can tell you that 7.7 percent of New Zealand artists (that’s forgetting you Mr “what’s it got to do with you? And Ms “but do you have the copyright?” and Associate Professor “well, in the final analysis, what is happiness?”) are indeed happy though only 3.24 percent were happy-go-lucky. While there might be some grumbling about OTN basing this on a sample of six artists, it is very interesting to note that the average percentage of happy artists in New Zealand exactly equates with the satisfaction rate found in artists throughout Europe. That research using a scale of one (very unhappy) to 10 (totally happy) also came up with a  7.7 percent happiness rate. How about that? It also was able to demonstrate that artists in Europe are .4 percent happier than the average non-artist. Our research question did differ from the one used in Europe. Their “Overall, how satisfied are you with your job?,” compared to our “how are things going?” and they also included a much wider range of artists, asking composers, musicians, dancers, actors, journalists, clowns, magicians, and nightclub performers some of whom, clowns for instance, were probably skewed on the happiness thing. But both coming in at 7.7 you have to admit, it’s uncanny.