As of August 2017, 44 organizations have been certified and have agreed to W.A.G.E.’s payment provisions to artists. New payment categories have been added, including provisions to: Compensate artists who participate in traveling exhibitions; and compensate artists who give a talk in conjunction with an exhibition — who will receive a separate compensation fee in addition to the money they receive for an exhibition. W.A.G.E., is the activist organization founded in 2008 to establish “sustainable economic relationships between artists and the institutions.” For additional information visit W.A.G.E.’s new website.
A new edition of my book, How to Survive & Prosper as an Artist: Selling Yourself without Selling Your Soul will be published in February. Prepublication orders are now being accepted at Amazon. Written for fine artists ready to launch their careers as well as experienced artists who wish to relaunch their careers. Empowers artists to take control of their careers to create a fulfilling life and earn a decent income. This newly revised edition continues to demystify the inner workings of the art world and challenge the status quo. New topics include: Feedback on new business models for artists (going to the extreme); use of social media and website development as marketing and publicity tools and what does and doesn’t work; importance of differentiating between the “art-buying public” and the “general public”; new suggestions for establishing and calculating prices for artwork; neighborhood gentrification and the growing challenges of securing a reasonably priced live/work space – and much more on many other important subjects.
International, National & Regional Art Press List. Email and snail mail addresses of arts writers, editors, and international, national and regional publications. Includes arts, general interest, and arts-related radio and television programs. Updated annually and on an ongoing basis. Available as a hard copy and on an Excel database. http://carollmichels.com/index.php/art-world-contacts/2-uncategorised/86-international-national-and-regional-art-press
Art Critics List. Email and snail mail and email addresses art critics, primarily in the New York City area. Updated annually and on an ongoing basis. Available as a hard copy and on an Excel database.
New York Area Art Press List, Email and snail mail addresses of art press contacts in the New York area. Also includes “listing columns” in New York and guidelines for preparing a listing news release. Updated annually and on an ongoing basis. Available as a hard copy and on an Excel database.
Interior Design and Architecture Press List. Email and snail mail addresses of writers, editors, and publications covering interior design, architecture, and landscape architecture. Updated annually and on an ongoing basis. Available as a hard copy and on an Excel database. www.carollmichels.com/index.php/art-world-contacts/2-uncategorised/88-interior-design-architecture-press-list
Many artists pay two monthly rents: one for studio space and another for housing. The growing problem is compounded by gentrification, with artists unable to afford to live in the neighborhoods they helped to pioneer. Consequently, cities are facing the threat of losing their thriving arts communities that generate tourist dollars, encourage economic development, create jobs, and fosters community pride.
Last month, through an innovative program called ArtCondo, a group of artists and one nonprofit purchased a 6,400 square foot lot in New York City’s South Bronx – that will become 20,000 square feet of artist work/live spaces, studio work spaces, timeshares for non-local artists, and a non-profit community facility space. ArtCondo was founded by artists Michele Gambetta and Matthew Fletcher. Other participants include: Amy Cheng, Barbara Broughel, Allan McCollum, Tracy Calvan, Gordon Fearey, and Glass Farm Ensemble. Participants leveraged their collective buying power to create a new and sustainable creative model with working spaces in NYC. For additional information: www.ArtCondo.com
Also in New York City, the mayor has pledged to provide 1,500 affordable housing units for artists and musicians by 2025.
Some of the other cities that are tackling the problem:
New Orleans, Bell Artspace Campus that will transform three buildings into 79 units of affordable live/work housing for low- to moderate-income artists, cultural workers and families. www.artspace.org/our-places/bell-artspace-campus
Tenneesee; The Housing Fund, a nonprofit organization received a $200,000 grant from the Kresge and Surdna Foundations to support the development of the purchase, purchase/rehabilitation, or new construction of artist live/work space in Middle Tennessee..
Dallas is planning an Arts District that would provide affordable housing and workspace for creative professionals ane their families.
Salt Lake City. Creates affordable housing and workspace for artists through the nonprofit organization Artspace. www.artspaceutah.org
BBB Warns Artists: Beware of Emails About Buying Art. How to detect art scams and what to look for. Sponsored by the Better Business Bureau of St. Louis, Missouri. www.bbb.org/stlouis/news-events/news-releases/2016/01/bbb-warning-on-art-scams
Stop Art Scams. Artists Kathleen McMahon uses her blog to educate, help, and prevent artists from becoming scam victims. http://stopartscams.blogspot.com
Known Scammer Names Used in Art-Related Email Scams. . A service of artist Kathleen McMahon.
Art and Debt is a platform dedicated to a discussion about the growing massive debt of art students and the effect it has on the work of artists.
The website was founded to coincide with a conference, The Artist as Debtor at Cooper Union on January 23, 2015 hosted by Coco Fusco and Noah Fischer.
More about the conference: “We live in an era of unprecedented profits from contemporary art sales and massive debts incurred by art students. Are these phenomena related? Is it a coincidence that in an age in which art can be made from nothing, the price attached to an art degree is staggeringly high? Contemporary art institutions amass great wealth through real estate development and the value of their holdings — why then do museums, art-related businesses and art schools rely so heavily on precarious and unpaid labor provided by artists? What are the connections between big money in the art world and the big debts taken on by so many young artists? Are artists encouraged to believe that extreme economic disparity is just part of the way the art world works? Do romantic ideas about merit and talent mask a system of indenture?”
Artist sues Getty Images and Alamay Stock Photos for one billion dollars.
For more information visit
List of 376 corporate art consultants/advisors nationwide and abroad, and paper printout of 272 snail mail addresses of corporate art consultants/advisors.
List of 944 of snail mail addresses of museum and independent curators nationwide who specialize in contemporary art. Includes annotated notes with important comments and 442 email addresses.
Both lists are available as a paper printout, via Dropbox, and as a CD. Visit
One of the most important ways for artists to directly participate in building an online reputation is through the use of press releases. In the 20th century, press release targets were limited to print publications, and radio and television. In addition, print publications required a lead time of 4-6 months. Today, target markets for press release dissemination offers many more possibilities, including blogs, e-zines, and digital versions of print publications. And, of course, the required lead time has shortened considerably.
Unfortunately, the press release is a tool underutilized by artists. Although a press release should be written to announce and describe anything newsworthy, the problem with many artists is either they are too humble, or too absorbed with aesthetic problems, or the bumps of daily living to recognize what about themselves is newsworthy or they view the media as an inaccessible planet that grants visas only to famous artists. As a consequence, many artists let press release opportunities pass by.
The very proactive organization W.A.G.E. (Working Artists for a Greater Economy) sent a very insightful letter to the New Museum in New York City:
“You recently announced expansion plans that will double the amount of space you currently occupy on the Bowery and that you have already successfully raised $43 million of the $80 million needed to do it.
“Congratulations – that’s big news. It could also be big news for the hundreds of artists who supply the content for your programs each year. After all, if you plan to double in size, surely there will be a significant increase in the number of programs being produced, which would surely provide income to more of the artists upon whose work your existence is predicated.
“If you were W.A.G.E. Certified that would certainly be the case, since you’d have committed to paying artists according to minimum standards of compensation.”
To read the letter in full and learn more about the organization, visit