Celebrating Women’s Day with Fine Art: How Women are Driving the Art Market and Building Their Wealth

This International Women’s Day we celebrate the women that are transforming the art scene. 

From artists, to collectors, to investors, women are setting the pace in the art world. 

Learn more about the rise of women in art and how they are driving the industry forward.

In honor of their many contributions to society, both past and present, people all across the world commemorate women on March 8th with International Women’s Day. 

It’s an opportunity to reflect on women’s achievements. While bringing attention to the obstacles they still face. 

As International Women’s Day draws near, it’s important to honor the groundbreaking contributions of women in the art world, in all its forms.

Women’s Role in the Art Market

In 2018, female artists were responsible for 2% of art sold. Despite the market for women made art doubling in the last decade, buyers are still reluctant to make high-end purchases. Women, however, are still gaining ground in the sector. 

Collectives like Art Girl Army and Guerrilla Girls empower female artists with creative activism. Galleries, museums, and art institutes are being led by more women than ever. Both of which work to chip away at the current conservative art world. 

The Rise of Female Artists

Female led and created art is finally reaching a wider audience. With artists like Yayoi Kusama, Jenny Saville, and Kara Walker changing the market.

Kusama is the highest-selling living female artist. Her painting “White No.28 of 1960” sold for $7.1 million in 2021. Saville’s Propped made history in 2019 when auctioned by Sotheby’s London for $12.5 million. With Walker’s Negress Notes selling at Sotheby’s New York in 2022 for $529, 200. A record price for the artist. 

Through their creativity and command of space, they show women are important in the art industry, deserve acknowledgment, and a place at the table.

Women Building Their Wealth through Art

Women are now investing in art to build their wealth, opening the art collecting field. Just 30 or 40 years ago, women relied on their husbands, or inherited wealth, in order to invest in art. Today’s women, and their independent sources of income, are shaping the market

Art collectors like Agnes Gund and Elaine Wynn have been making waves in the industry, with highly sought after collections. Creating a shift in what and whose art is worthy of collection. 

The advantages of investing in art for women include diversification of their portfolio and the ability to support female artists.

Art as a Medium for Feminist Expression

Women have used art to communicate their feminist beliefs throughout history. 

Feminist art originated as political activity in the 1960s and 1970s, with Judy Chicago and Yoko Ono challenging gender stereotypes with their paintings. 

Today, Mickalene Thomas continues this tradition by challenging race, gender, and sexuality in her large-scale paintings. 

As we celebrate Women’s Day, we acknowledge and honor women’s contributions in art. 

They drive the art industry, express their beliefs, and invest in worthy art. They support and promote female artists, collectives, and projects.

By celebrating women, we build a diverse and inclusive industry that recognizes everyone’s contributions.

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