…people would be surprised that contemporary artists often “did not get a bean” for taking part in shows at publicly funded galleries. She said the practice of not paying artists was now deeply entrenched in gallery culture “and presents a worrying trend”.

via Art and design | The Guardian.

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  1. I don’t do shows like that anymore. I am always being “invited” to show my work in large public spaces and private spaces and it costs me thousands of dollars in printing and framing. Collectors are not attending these shows. I never get paid anything, of course, and I have to mount the shows with no help from anyone. I find the promise of “Oh, it’s wonderful exposure for you,” to be facile, flip, insulting and patronizing. Many musician friends have similar experiences–as if they should play violin concerti for free at a gallery opening for two hours because maybe YoYo Ma will then invite them on tour.

  2. I could not agree more. I would add “almost free” as well to this category. I am a photographer, and I get endless requests from charitable institutions for near free shoots. After the initial few I realised that though they were charitable they were often sponsored by very wealthy individuals or corporates and collected a small fortune at each event. Moreover, they often paid full chages for the premises, etc. Yet they expect the photographer to shoot for free, or next to free; with the promise of exposure. But nothing ever comes out of the exposure. Hence I too decline now.

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