International Women’s Day 2019: #BalanceForBetter
Real talk: Female representation in the arts sucks. So this year, Third Drawer Down is calling for #BalanceForBetter. We want to see a higher percentage of female representation across museums, commercial galleries, contemporary art spaces, biennales, art prizes, state collections, and across arts sector boards.
According to the Countess Report from 2014, 74% of visual art graduates are women, yet only 40% of female artists have gallery representation and only 34% of museum exhibitions were centered around female artists.
Sadly, this treatment of women in the arts is mirrored among the decision-makers. The Conversation recently found that Australian women in senior roles in the arts are earning 38% less than their male counterparts and that the role of women as artistic leaders is minimal:
“In a sector where women represent the majority audience as well as the majority of its participants, the low level of female artistic leadership is significantly out of tune with contemporary expectations”.
And though these statistics speak for themselves, the National Museum of Women in the Arts have opted for something much simpler. Each March since 2016, their social media asks a single question for Women’s History Month: “Can you name five women artists?” Using the hashtag #5WomenArtists, we’re faced with the embarrassing reality that the lives and work of women artists have been, and are continually greatly overshadowed and undervalued.
Third Drawer Down favourites - the Guerrilla Girls - best sum it up: instead of asking “Why haven’t there been more great women artists throughout Western history?”, ask “Why haven’t more women been considered great artists throughout Western history?”
We are proud to say that over 60% of the artists we work with are female, including powerhouse artists like the late Louise Bourgeois, Mickalene Thomas, Magda Archer, Del Kathryn Barton and activist campaign group Guerrilla Girls, amongst many others. We adore our female artists, and we know you will too.
Shop our most adored piece made in collaboration with our idols, and support female artists!
The feminist women and men of Third Drawer Down Studio.