Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Out for the count


CoUNTess is here and has been doing some overdue statistical research confirming what many have been discussing, too quietly, the systematic gender inequality in the art world. The art world is global but we thought we would start local, even regional in the quest to examine the truth behind the serious representational gender inequality at every level of the art training production marketing consuming system.

CoUNTess awaits with anticipation Art Express 2009 but in the meantime was wondering which artists high school students are being exposed to in the class room. We discovered an initiative by the Kaldor Art Projects who have produced in partnership with the Curriculum Directorate of the NSW Department of Education & Training a DVD resource for high school students called MOVE Video Art in Schools. The aim of the resource is to aquaint and inspire students with the new art form of VIDEO.

Excuse me ... Can someone at either of these organisations explain to CoUNTess why all the "commissioned" artists in this high school resource are men? CoUNTess would always encourage such resources to champion gender equality, considering that no less than half of visual art students in high school are women.

CoUNTess would be happy to enter in on this exclusive partnership to create future resourses for higher education, the first could be titled MOVE OVER you don't have to be male to make video art. CoUNTess also has a vast network of fabulous video artists who are women as we understand the organizers of these kind of resources might have trouble finding many women artists to choose from in Australia's commercial galleries and public spaces. But you will find the nations artschools overflowing with women, as the majority of students and the minority of teaching/research staff, but those numbers will be crunched in future posts in the search for the location of the glass ceiling.

CoUNTess couldn't help but notice that the commissioned artists in the Kaldor resource are all represented by commercial galleries: Anna Schwartz (23men/15 women), Rosyln Oxley9 (17 men/22 women), Barry Keldoulis (13 men/7 women), Grant Pirrie (10 men/5 women). Now CoUNTess is still pouring over the commercial gallery statistics and very much looking forward to asking the questions as to why are men proportionally over represented in commerical art galleries, competitions and awards and very importantly why should mens art be worth more than women's?