Greg Mason Burns

A Lack of Diversity in the US Art World

This is a shame. According to the (my link is to the LA Times), one-third of all solo museum exhibits in the United States are by artists from five different galleries. In other words, there’s a lot of power in the hands of very, very few. That’s a clear lack of diversity in the US art world if I ever saw one.Sure, you can argue that there’s diversity in the art world still, just like you can argue there’s diversity in the workplace – until you walk into your company’s board room and suddenly realize that you either completely belong or you don’t at all. 

I get it, there are too many artists out there. Museums can’t possibly show them all, or even a majority of them. But why do so few galleries get to control what becomes famous in the future or not. This question really hurts the art industry as a whole. When academics look back at major art museum exhibits, they are not going to see a proper representation of what is produced today. In fact, they won’t even see a proper representation of quality. All historians will see is what was decided to be commercially successful.

If we don’t want a lack of diversity in the US art world, then museums need to shut the galleries out and do more of their own homework.

Lack of Diversity in the US Art World

Chaval Ceara – Watercolor on Paper