So you were an art history student. You’re entering the art world but have only ever experienced ~art~ as defined by academia. Gone are the days of chugging coffee on the way to a 10 am seminar while skimming a Walter Benjamin reading to find something smart to say in class. Life used to revolve around the 150+ pieces of art that you had to memorize for your midterm, but now it’s time for a reality check. Welcome to the real art world my friend, and there is plenty of stuff that your professor didn’t lecture about. These are some things you MUST know about the art world.
- Museums and academia are NOT the only jobs in art. That’s right, you don’t have to wear a stodgy, stiff blazer to work every day. From magazines and cool tech startups (hello, Artbinder!!) to art PR firms and online art marketplaces, the options are endless. Which leads us to our next piece of advice…
- Intern intern intern. If there’s something in the art world you’re interested in, there’s probably an internship for it. The art scene may seem intimidating at first, but interning means getting your foot in the door and making those necessary connections. Network your butt off.
- Microsoft Excel is your best friend. I guarantee that every job listing will say “Proficiency in Excel is a plus” and ya better be more than proficient. Worship Excel’s graceful lines and boxes like a Mondrian hanging in the Louvre.
- Know what a D-ring hanger is. You’ve stared at art on your flashcards, but do you know how to hang that piece up on wall? Didn’t think so. This is a helpful guide if you’re interested.
- Don’t underestimate the power of social media! Instagram is an especially helpful visual tool for promoting the newest gallery opening or must-see exhibit. (Check out our fave account recommendations here: How To Keep Up With Contemporary Art.)
- Know the art world VIPs. Memorizing and matching names to faces isn’t just a Devil Wears Prada task. Once you know David Zwirner from Iwan Wirth and Marian Goodman from Sadie Coles, you’re a pro.
- Memorizing the exact date and provenance of that piece of art doesn’t actually matter. But you probably already knew that.
Let’s be real– you can only learn so much from your lectures and textbooks at school. When it comes to actually getting your hands dirty in the art world, ArtBinder has got your back.