Sexism in the Art World

This video is a discussion about sexism experienced by artists in the art world. Sexism impacts many areas of the art world: in academia, in galleries, museums, and more. Stories from personal experiences and public events that involve sexism are explained by Art Prof Clara Lieu and Teaching Artists Lauryn Welch and Deepti Menon.

Video Walkthrough

  • Sexism is present in all areas of the art world: in academia, museums, galleries, freelancing, etc.
  • Deepti’s experience with having a less common first name where people changed their demeanor once they found out that she presented as female.
  • Prof Lieu’s experience seeing the older generation of white male professors who go on to hire younger versions of themselves.
  • Lauryn’s experience with people in college programs telling female presenting people that they won’t have time to make artwork when they have children.
  • Young female presenting artists are often perceived as being “green” and “fragile” whereas many young male presenting artists are seen as “bold” and “genius.”
  • Prof Lieu’s story about an colleague who was asked at a job interview how she would “balance a full-time job and her family.” (This question is illegal for a search committee to ask a candidate.)
  • Talking about sexism isn’t easy, but these conversations are really important to have.
  • Prof Lieu’s experience of being accused of bullying male students, and being put “on trial” to defend herself.
  • Prof Lieu’s experience with a male student who created a project about how everything was her fault.
  • Many women artists are pigeonholed into being told that their work is about craft, motherhood, and small.
  • In the art world women are frequently paid lower rates for the exact same work.
  • Many freelancers are now sharing their rates. This is a huge game changer in terms of increasing awareness of what a fair rate is.
  • There is a trend of women in their 80’s, 90’s finally getting the attention that many male artists receive at a much younger age.

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