Fees & payments
Good practice in paying artists
a-ns Code of Practice for the Visual Arts encourages artists and arts organisers to contribute confidently
when making professional arrangements. In particular it requires recognising worth and considering the value of all the resources that are brought to the project.
Research by University of Newcastle highlights that artists earnings are low when compared with similar professionals. At the same time, awareness of the pivotal and unique role of artists is higher than ever before within arts council and cultural industries agendas, in regeneration agendas, within social change frameworks, and across into the fields of health, science, communications and technology.
A serious issue to be addressed now by all who believe in the value of artists and their work is just how the artists in the future will be able to financially sustain their practices; to afford studio space and access to specialist facilities; pay for training and professional development; cover necessary research time, and through having time for experiment and exposure to critical interchange, maintain the quality in their work that is crucial to the delivery of successful public projects for communities.
With an ever-growing artist population, at one end of the scale there are the new artists kicking off their careers with a mountain of student debt and at the other, the established artists facing a lengthy retirement period with no personal pension in sight.
Aimed at public sector arts employers, commissioners, consultants and arts trainers, Good practice in paying artists is intended to suggest how to make the exchange more equitable. It specifically addresses the context for fees and payments for artists residencies, workshops and community commissions. Guidance on payments to artists for exhibiting their work in public is covered elsewhere in the portfolio of material that makes up a substantial Fees and payments section on www.a-n.co.uk
This research and publishing programme was enabled through a partnership between a-n The Artists Information Company and Arts Council England. It represents a significant commitment by the Arts Council to ensuring proper and fair payment to visual artists in recognition of their professional status, skills and experience and to ensuring that the guidelines that are in place for visual artists are current, and can be easily updated on an annual basis. It also highlights a-ns pivotal role as the UKs representative body for artists practice and trusted adviser to employers of artists.
Director of Programmes,
a-n The Artists Information Company
This is a text-only version of Good practice in paying artists. To download Good practice in paying artists as PDF format click here
Payments to artists
Payments to artists context and comparators
The artist needs to demonstrate good organisational and communication skills and a high level of achievement in their art form(s).
Bridge Street/Town Hill Schools Residency, from an advertisement on www.a-n.co.uk
It is well-documented and often repeated that visual artists earnings are low in comparison with other professional workers with similarly high levels of education, expertise and commitment. Visual artists are around three times as likely as the working population in general to be self-employed; and as self-employed people they negotiate remuneration and other conditions on an individual basis with commissioners and clients.
Salaries for other occupations cited here that could be treated as possible comparators for visual artists, have been selected on the grounds that some of their skills are required by artists who undertake public commissions and residencies or similar work in community settings.
|Occupation||Salary||Equivalent day rate||Source|
|Teacher (average salary)||£30,274 pa||£259|
|Teacher (starting salary outside London)||£18,558 pa||£173||NUT1|
|Project Worker (youth work)||£25,818 pa||£226||Reed|
|Project Manager (IT)||£52,374 pa||£421||Reed2|
Note that teachers salaries rose in September 2005, making the starting salary outside London £19,161.
A full-time employee earning the national average salary for a professional (£33,852 pa) would need to command a day rate of £285 to maintain his/her income in self-employment.
Selected fees offered in January 2005
|Description||Region||Payment / length||Expenses / benefits||Person specification|
|Liverpool Biennial residency||North West||30 days @ £250 / day
includes planning delivery and evaluation
|Any discipline, includes supporting another artists professional development.|
|Cywaith Cymru Artwork Wales artist in residence||Caernarfon||£160 fee for planning day, £3,600 fee for 6 weeks||Budget for materials of £750 and a publication or CD and some travel and documentation||Work with people in workshops or individually and develop own work|
|Burnley Borough Council Planning & Environment Services commission||North West||£19,000, 12-month contract||Experienced public artist|
|Salisbury District Hospital||Southern||£5,200 per commission (including materials and VAT)||Travel expenses||Interest in health and experience working in consultation with staff and patients. 6 days workshops included|
|Temporary, aerial public art||Eastern||£3,300 (including materials and expenses)||Artists working in any media|
|Prestongrange Museum craft residency||Prestonpans||£18,000, 12+ months||Create pieces of work for community; 50% of time developing own work|
|School residency||Orkneys||£20,000 for 12 months (collaborative part of residency, 17 hours per week)||Professional, artists who have experience fo working with primary children in community settings, or demonstrate an aptitude for this|
Note that although the £250 a day rate offered by some commissioners represents a salary equivalent above the national average for full-time workers, it is nevertheless below the national average for professional workers. The £250 day rate would amount to the equivalent of the average annual salary in the teaching profession.
What impacts on rates of pay offered to artists?
Interviews with commissioners and employers revealed the main factors as:
How experienced the artist is, including reputation and any special artistic skill required;
Length of contract;
Non-artistic skills such as teaching, working with hard-to-reach groups, or project management;
Personal qualities of the artist;
Ability of the commissioning organisation to pay.
Work offered to artists often expects them to have additional skills. For example, they are regularly expected to work as teachers. They may not be expected to have teaching qualifications, but are expected to be able to demonstrate teaching skills. They are also often expected to work with the community in ways which clearly require community work and development skills.
Experienced artists may also be expected to mentor or lead and guide less experienced colleagues in an artistic team. Such expectations grade into requirements that artists employed on a fee basis should act as project managers, and in some cases, take overall responsibility for delivering to budget.
All these expectations of non-artistic skills appear to be taken as given: if they are required for a particular job, only the artist who possesses those additional skills will be considered for it, but there will not be a specific element of their remuneration linked to these skills. No one interviewed for the research study mentioned essential non-artistic skills as the basis for assessing payment levels. In comparison, teachers can access additional allowances on top of their salaries for example, for management and special needs teaching.
Artists are also frequently expected to demonstrate soft personal skills in addition to specific artistic and non-arts based skills. Time and again in the interviews, the importance of a proven track record of reliability was mentioned as the basis for giving a particular artist a piece of work.
Not only are artists expected to be reliable, but also to be self-reliant, require the minimum of supervision, to be able to work in a team (with artists or other professionals) and to be able to communicate effectively. These qualities, however were by and large not something that commissioners saw as commanding any specific premium. However, reliability was often discussed in the same breath as experience and provided the basis for it being well worth paying higher rates for experienced artists.
This article is an edited version of Fees and Payments for Visual Artists, a research study by Susan Baines and Jane Wheelock with Judy Kohannejad and Susan Coulson, Newcastle University 2004. Click here to see the full version.
Sample Job description
Sample Job description for community commission
The artist will have to interpret the brief and forge and maintain a conversation between the distinct groups. The artist will act as messenger and ensure a genuine collaboration / partnership by carrying information between the institutions.
Artist in residence at Millom School and Haverigg Prison
The following list of possible tasks and responsibilities has been compiled from analysis of a sample of residencies and community commissions advertised during January 2005.
This outline is designed as a checklist and should be adapted and amended according to circumstances. Each element in the list can be selected as appropriate, with the information in [square brackets] indicating where the basic job description can be varied or made more specific according to the context of the project.
|Artist's job description||Yes / No|
|Leading and coordinating the project team consisting of [artist[s], local authority staff, community officer, etc]|
|Actively engaging with [community, schools, disadvantaged groups, the public, etc], in [place/location], through delivery of [workshops, performances, other activities, etc]|
|Researching into the context and parameters for the project including consultations with [local community, school groups, social services, other arts professionals, key stakeholders etc]|
|Working with local schools to relate the project to the National Curriculum|
|Producing a work plan for the project that meets [financial, time-scale and other requirements]|
|Producing [art, craft or media work[s], live art event[s], etc] in line with the projects aims and requirements|
|Producing an exhibition [at the projects outset/completion] that profiles the projects intentions and outcomes|
|Producing a [policy/strategy/public art programme] including [identifying and briefing, commissioning, managing other artists to contribute, etc]|
|Liaising with [arts officer, cultural development/regeneration agency, key stakeholders etc] on the progress and direction of the project|
|Establishing connections with other relevant artistic and cultural groups|
|Making presentations on the project to [project team, community groups, key stakeholders, etc]|
|Keeping the [community, press, etc] informed about the project and its achievements|
|Producing an evaluative report for use by [the commissioner, key stakeholders]|
|Contributing material [images, texts, etc] to promotional strategies for the project|
Sample Person specification
Sample Person specification for an artists residency or community Commission
The University of Newcastles research for the Fees and payments programme highlighted a number of core competencies, skills, abilities and personal characteristics that employers expect the artists selected to have in order to undertake the work. These,
along with analysis of a range of advertised artists briefs have been compiled to suggest an outline Person specification for an artists residency or community project.
This is designed to be adapted and amended by arts employers, as an aid to designing suitable briefs and budgets, and to support recruitment and negotiations on levels of remuneration and the detail of project outcomes.
|Qualifications and experience||Essential /desirable|
|Demonstrable high level of achievement in art practice [first/second degree in XXX]|
|Previous work [number of projects/years of professional practice] in communities [with children, vulnerable adults, etc]|
|Experience of creating learning through devising and running participatory workshops with [community groups, children, prisoners, patients and staff in healthcare settings, etc]|
|Working in a [multi-disciplinary] team that includes [arts, non-arts, teaching professionals, healthcare specialists, architects/planners]|
|Knowledge of current [regeneration, social inclusion, cultural diversity, local arts, environmental, public-sector] strategies [and policies]|
|Project management [of a budget of £XXXXX]|
|Criminal Records Bureau Clearance|
|Health and safety certificate for use of [equipment]|
|Skills||Essential / desirable|
|High level of creative thinking|
|Good organisational skills|
|Good interpersonal skills|
|Good time management|
|Deal with multiple priorities|
|Ability to research [to identify key components in the project] [evaluate outcomes against expectations]|
|Ability to demonstrate art materials and art techniques|
|Good presentation skills for [public engagements, written reports, documentation]|
|Ability to mentor/train other artists [whilst carrying out the project]|
|Ability to supervise volunteers|
|Personal attributes||Essential / desirable|
|Ability to motivate and inspire people|
|Enthusiastic about experimentation in visual arts practice|
|Abilty to meet targets and deadlines|
Note that QAA defines the core skills that fine art students should achieve at graduation as Self-management, Critical awareness, Interpersonal and social skills, Communication skills and Locating information.
The artist as self-employed specialist
As a-ns research demonstrates some lack of awareness amongst those seeking to contract artists about the specific costs attached to self-employment, and thus how these reasonably impact on establishing the level of payment offered to artists undertaking residencies and commissions in community settings, the following is provided to aid understanding.
Example of annual work expectations for an employed Creative Programmer in a publicly-funded arts setting
35 hours a week
25 days leave a year + one day for each full year of service, to a maximum of 30 days annually
8 bank holidays
These are the costs that an artist has to incur to be an artist and thus be in position to tender for work.
Insurance: premises, public liability, public indemnity, equipment, health, etc
Premises: studio or other workspace rent, rates, heat and light, repairs, security, etc
Telephone/communications: telephone, mobile, internet, post, stationery
IT: software licences, consumables
Research: books/magazines, materials, travel, course fees, protective clothing, etc
Professional and advisory services: accountancy, legal advice on contracts, costs of gaining Criminal Bureau Clearance etc
Promotion: advertising, publicity material, website, etc
Equipment (annual equivalent): vehicle, computer, printer, camera, other studio equipment, etc
bank charges/loan interest
The overheads that are specific to a self-employed artist contribute to making an artists expectations for payment higher than an employed counterpart, for example a teacher or arts officer. This because when calculating what to charge for a particular project, an artist has to include a proportion of their annual costs.
Investing in quality
Of course, just like all employees, artists shouldnt be expected to work for five days a week, 52 weeks of the year. Thus, the day rates given here take into account:
Bank holidays 8 a year (expected to become a legal requirement for employees soon)
Annual leave 25 days a year (20 is the minimum for an employee)
Sickness national average is 5 days a year, to include essential family needs
Administration at least 10 days a year to do accounts, etc
Producing quotations and making presentations average 15 days a year, noting that probably only 25% of the contracts an artist submits for will be successful
Maintaining quality in the art
Continuing Professional Development is now an expectation for all parts of the UK workforce. An artist will only be as good as their last contract if they dont have opportunities built into their working year to refresh their practice through training and professional development. This may include immersing themselves in the studio to experiment with new ideas and approaches, taking part in critical dialogues and learning new skills and techniques.
Training at least 5 days a year, in line with other employed professionals
Research and development at least 15 days a year
Thus, an artist usually reckons on a maximum of 177 available working (earning) days annually.
What should artists be paid comparator professions
Looking at what similarly qualified people in different, but not entirely dissimilar, jobs earn is a useful way to position payment to an artist.
Perhaps the most obvious comparison to be made is with teachers. There are strong logical reasons:
teachers are usually graduates, and many have an additional qualification, making the training period four years, similar to that of many artists;
most teachers are employed by local authorities, and many artists will also be engaged by such authorities;
artists are sometimes engaged to undertake work similar to that of teachers eg leading participatory workshops;
many of the management skills required by an artist are similar to those used by a teacher.
In 2004, teachers were paid the following approximate sums:
starting salary (outside London) £18,500;
average salary for an established teacher (outside London) £30,250.
a teachers salary increased by 3% in September 2005
An average teacher has probably had at least ten years service, after which automatic annual promotions tend to cease. Until then they are worth approximately £1,000 a year. London weighting tends to be worth not much more than £1,000 a year.
Interpreted for an artist this might mean that:
a newly-qualified artist should aim to make £19,600 a year;
an artist ten years out of college should hope to make £30,000 a year;
about £1,100 a year should be added for an artists extra experience in between these times;
after an artist has worked for about ten years, increased earnings have to be justified by personal additional experience and flair, although this option is always available before then if it can be justified;
if an artist is working in an expensive (probably urban) area, it is justified for his/her target earnings to increase by more than £1,000 a year.
Self-employment and pensions
Government is concerned that the self-employed sector as a whole is not making provision for retirement pensions, as this will put a greater strain in future on public resources for the elderly. There is no evidence that artists are bucking this trend. Pensions for employees in the public sector, however, are provided for through a contribution from the employee, that in many cases is matched or improved on by the employer.
For example, a senior arts post advertised in January 2005 offered an employer contribution of 12% into a pension scheme. Arts Council Englands Pension Scheme for officers is a final salary, non-contributory scheme with a nominal contribution (2005) of 1.5% of salary...
It could therefore be argued that those in the public sector who want to be able to continue to use self-employed artists in the future should be actively encouraging them to charge higher rates for their work, in order that artists can set aside a reasonable percentage of their annual income into a savings or pension fund.
Checklist Is the work freelance?
|Work undertaken by an artist can be considered of a freelance nature if:||Yes / No|
|an artist is seeking to undertake the trade by equipping themselves with the necessary resources to do so, and is incurring costs in the process and supplying services to a reasonable number of clients or customers|
|an artist is taking financial risk in supplying the services|
|an artist is probably supplying more than their labour and might, for example, also supplying materials, equipment or ancillary tools and facilities to enable the supply of services to take place|
|an artist is not undertaking a key role, and particularly one of a management nature, inside the organisation that is paying them|
|in education the service supplied is not teaching, or if it is, it is only an occasional workshop|
|most importantly (and with some difficulty in many cases) the artist is either allowed to supply someone else to provide the service if they are unable to do so for any reason (even if in practice they never have) or they are allowed to engage people to assist them to do so without the permission of the person making payment to them|
Note that this list doesnt describe all conditions necessary to prove an artist is a freelance provider of services. In some cases, such as education, the rules are specific and tight and many artists who might be considered freelance contractors for any other service are considered employees in this case.
This article is edited from Establishing a Charge Rate for a Working Artist by Richard Murphy. Richard Murphy is a Chartered Accountant and a journalist, campaigner and occasional broadcaster on taxation and pension issues.
Sample artists overheads
The suggested day rates for artists contained in this publication are based on overhead costs of £10,000 and £15,000 per annum, and were informed by surveys of artists between October 04 and January 05.
Insurance policy costs range from £250 for public liability to around £1,200 for professional or product indemnity. Public sector employers generally require self-employed artists to have their own insurance when undertaking residencies and commissions. Many galleries and open submission exhibitions expect artists to have insurance cover for the art works.
Studio space can cost from £480 to over £5,000 a year, with many artists paying business rates on top of rents. London-based studio provider Acme quotes space in their low cost studio buildings as from £6 per square foot per year (£3,780 for 530 sq ft pa) whilst this size in live/work space in North London from another provider is £7,200 pa. One-year tenancies for studios offered by Wolverhampton Art Gallery cost £1,400 pa for 151 sq ft. Top-lit spaces in high-ceilinged 181sq ft studios in rural Oxford cost £2,400 pa. Light, power, heat and security in studios are usually extra. Rural studios let through Wasps, Scotlands largest studio provider, were advertised in 2004 at £3.35-£5.60 sq ft inclusive. London-based Cockpit Studios spaces for designer-makers in Deptford cost in the region of £1,820 pa for 100 sq ft.
Artists without permanent studio space may still need to rent one for a specific project. Weekly or monthly studio and residential lets of 179 sq ft through Wasps in Glasgow were £91.35 pcm (equivalent £1,096 pa). Artists may also pay commercial rates to use specialist resources such as film and new media facilities that include technical support.
Telephone and communication artists costs range from £750-£2,500 a year depending on the artists practice and location. Artists in individual studios in rural areas may thus need to spend more on communications than those in city-based group buildings. Broadband is an essential requirement, both for using the internet as a research resource and when sending digital submissions. No artist can afford to be without a mobile phone!
Professional fees accountancy charges range from £250-£700 a year, artists may also need to use the services of a lawyer to review a specific contract, handle a dispute or to advise generally. Paying a mentor (a more experienced artist or an arts specialist) costs from £200-£500 a day.
Negotiating a win-win outcome
a-ns own research in 2003 shows that 26% of all opportunities openly promoted annually for application by artists are in the form of residencies and public commissions, with the average value of a residency at £4,700 and an average commission budget at £19,615. For advertised opportunities such as these, the commissioner has already established the brief, outcomes and budget for a project. Thus a typical brief for an advertised residency may put this in terms of:
The Lead Artists contract will be for 60 days work including research, communications, production and promotion with a fee of £9,000 payable in three equal instalments.
Residency advertised January 2005
The budget for this is likely to have been drawn up, and funds raised or allocated to it, many months previously. Thus any artist is likely to want to renegotiate the arrangement to ensure that the day rate reflects their experience level and current professional costs.
The options to resolve the matter could be described as:
Raise more money
Stage the project so there is time for additional funding to be raised or brought into the budget.
Identify any in-kind resources you can provide that benefit the artist or save them time
This could include professional photographic documentation of the project, free services such as photocopying and digital printing, locating a sponsor for materials or specific art services, etc.
The artist renegotiates the scope and outcomes of the project and does fewer days for the same budget, thus the 60 days as above may be recast as:
50 days for a new graduate (£179 a day*)
43 days for an artist with 3 years experience (£206 a day*)
35 days for an artist with ten or more years experience (£256 a day*).
Figures based on annual overheads of £10,000.
Review the budget
Are there other areas in the overall budget that can be cut back on, to put more into to the fee?
Note however that under-budgeting for the artists materials and expenses is unwise and is likely to result in a poor quality project.
Although most people tend to feel uncomfortable discussing money, a successful negotiation considerably improves your chances of getting a quality project with high artistic standards, and this can only be of benefit to the artist and commissioner alike.
See also Negotiating a better rate of pay (for artists)
FAQs around paying artists
The artist will be creative, persuasive, a lateral thinker and problem-solver. S/he will be a team player capable of leading where appropriate. S/he will need to both advocate and get results. S/he will have demonstrable experience of successfully devising public artworks, considered by clients, as fit for purpose, cost-effective and free of maintenance complications.
Somerset County Council brief for Design Team Artist
Q Ive been asked to coordinate a public event that will rely on artists coming forward to develop their own projects. But Ive only just found out that although theres money for me and for promotion of the event itself, theres actually none to pay the artists or to contribute to the financing of their projects. What shall I do?
A If artists arent being paid, it could be argued that they are effectively providing their services as volunteers. The input by volunteers to public projects and services is guided by a Code of practice. The specific areas covered by this include things such as ensuring volunteers receive payment of out-of-pocket expenses and ensuring they receive suitable access to training and professional development support as they supply any labour.
In the case of your event, you could use the principles of good practice for use of volunteers to persuade the organisers to recast the budget to ensure the artists can claim their basic expenses. The artists volunteer input could also be translated into the credits for the event, so that alongside the thanks to and logos for XX funding or local government agency, the individual artists are acknowledged as co-sponsors.
For more information on the application of a Code of practice for volunteers click here
But to ensure the organisers of your event are aware of the real financial costs involved for artists who are mounting a new project, you could as part of the contractual arrangement with each artist ask them to provide you with:
a log of the actual hours they spend on developing and realising their project and a calculation of the financial value in terms of their normal day rate
a note of contribution to their running costs they have lost against the above time see The artists fees toolkit for a calculator for this and the above rate.
a description of materials, services, travel they have paid for, including the £ equivalent of in-kind support
Summarise all this data as part of the financial material within your evaluation report to the commissioners and funders. This places a value on the artists contributions that provides organisers with a clearer understanding of what level of budget they need to raise another time.
Q We are a local-authority run gallery occasionally employing artists to run workshops. We have been told by our payments department that the artists must be taken on as casual employees and their incomes taxed by us, even though they are often self-employed and paying their tax fairly through that. What is the situation?
A Theres a lot of confusion about when anyone should be considered self-employed. HM Revenue & Customs have recognised this and have now issued a new leaflet on the subject. This is document IR56 and is available for download from their website at www.hmrc.gov.uk/pdfs/ir56.pdf But even this leaflet does note that there are special rules for some situations and one these occurs if a person is a school teacher, lecturer or instructor.
It does not matter in these cases that a person might be self-employed for all their other work, the special rules apply for teaching and related activities, including running workshops for local authorities who consider themselves to be supplying education.
Two situations can arise here. The first is that the employer (whether a school, education authority, university or Further Education college) can issue a contract of employment for the work the artist does. In that case the artist is employed, as a matter of fact.
Alternatively the artist might be deemed to be employed because they are working in an educational establishment and are paid by, or on behalf of the organisation or person providing the education, and not by fees directly from individual students, or the instruction is carried out in the presence of their students (rather than by correspondence or videotape) or the employment is with the Open University. In any of these cases PAYE has to be applied unless before running the sessions the artist has agreed to teach on not more than three days in three consecutive months or if the sessions are given as public lectures which anyone can attend.
An educational establishment is one of the institutions noted above that provides teaching leading to a certificate, diploma, degree or professional qualification, or if the course given could be used that for that purpose even though it does not aim at preparing students for an examination.
What this means in practice is that most teaching is treated as being an employment, especially when paid for by a state authority, whatever the tax status a person has for the rest of their work unless (and this is the important bit) you do the work for no more than a day a month, and for not more than three months in a row. This is recognised in a further (but harder to find) HM Revenue & Customs document which says in guidance issued to the Committee of Vice Chancellors and Principals that:
A visiting lecturer who gives a one-off talk or short series of talks on a subject about which he or she has specialist knowledge and which is not part of the core curriculum will normally be engaged on rather different terms and conditions and is likely to be self -employed.
What this means is that the tax status of any work has to be discussed in advance. With luck it might be agreed to be a self-employed fee if it fits the description in the preceding paragraph. But if it is course work leading to a qualification given to students it is exceptionally unlikely that it will be treated as a self-employment and tax will be deducted.
Such are the vagaries of our tax system.
Q What should I pay an artist for a 1.5 hour talk?
A Is this an off-the-peg talk that is one the artist regularly gives, that needs no preparation or additional work to deliver? Do there need to be any preliminary telephone or face-to-face conversations with you to set up this arrangement? As a general rule, every talk an artists does is a one-off, as to do a good job they expect to tailor the slides and presentation to the specific audience and this includes being briefed by you. And then theres the post-event administration such as invoicing and possibly debt-collecting if you dont pay promptly.
So, assuming the artist lives within reasonable travelling distance to your venue, good practice in this respect would be to pay an artist three times the contact time, based on their usual daily charge-out rate see sample day rates in this publication.
eg 5.5 hours x £26 (*minimum rate) = £143 + VAT if the artist is VAT registered, plus travel at 40p per mile or public transport at actual cost.
Self-employed artists will expect to supply an invoice including travel receipts.
By paying an artist in a way that acknowledges the nature and value of their practice, you can be assured of getting a professional job that you and they can be proud to be associated with.
* Click here to check artists current day rates
Q Im a consultant for a public body offering an artists residency for £5,000, do I have to put it out for tender?
A As part of applying best practice guidelines, public bodies usually have a ceiling beyond which projects have to be openly advertised. But there are other reasons to do this. Open submission usually attracts a wider application, and thus contributes to meeting cultural diversity and disability action plans so you get to see more work by more artists, contributing to your overall knowledge of whats happening in the visual arts, for the benefit of your future projects.
But do bear in mind that it is not necessarily good use of public money to spend more on advertising than the overall value of the budget. Alternatives to advertising are to solicit applications more widely than the artists you already know by, for example, offering it through a selection of artists networks these are listed on www.a-n.co.uk or visiting open studio events and studio groups in your locality. Another way is to ask a gallery curator or established artist to nominate a number of suitable artists as a shortlist and to invite these artists make proposals.
Q What is good practice as regards paying two artists who work as a collaborative duo?
A Matthew Dalziel and Louise Scullion working collaboratively for ten years comment on www.a-n.co.uk: trying to make a living in the visual arts is pretty tough.
But two artists bring twice the energy, ideas, skills and professional experience to a project and are usefully self-covering when it comes to illness or other indisposition. This with the added magic of a creative collaboration, may justify doubling any suggested day rates.
A more sophisticated approach is to negotiate with artists who are familiar with collaboration, asking them to calculate a suitable day rate for their joint overheads they may share studios, insurance policies, transport, communications, etc and their fees, thus suggesting the overall artists budget. If the collaboration is newly-created for your project, you should in any case allow extra paid-for time within the project for the duo to establish working and communication patterns and to realise the full artistic potential of the collaboration.
If an existing duo is selected from an open submission, youll need to negotiate and agree in advance how tasks and responsibilities will be shared within delivery of the proposed outcomes, to ensure the project optimises the unique qualities an artistic collaboration will bring to it. For insights into artists collaborations read the profiles of Dalziel and Scullion, Langlands and Bell, John Wood and Paul Harrison, and Nina Pope and Karen Guthrie on www.a-n.co.uk (subscriber access only). Also check out www.walkerandbromwich.org.uk for Zoë Walker and Neil Bromwich whose innovative projects are featured in the printed version of this publication.
Q When Im developing and fundraising for
Sample artists day rates 2007-08
These are based on 2006-07 figures with inflation added
|Experience level||Annual £ excluding overheads||Day rates with overheads £10K p a||Day rates with overheads £15K p a|
|New graduate artist||22,932||£186||£214|
|1 years experience||24,260||£193||£221|
|2 years experience||26,675||£207||£235|
|3 years experience||28,003||£214||£243|
|4 years experience||29,004||£220||£248|
|5 years experience||30,658||£229||£258|
|6 years experience||31,985||£237||£265|
|7 years experience||33,313||£244||£272|
|8 years experience||34,641||£252||£280|
|9 years experience||35,969||£260||£288|
|10 years experience||37,296||£267||£295|
1 Rates exclude artists expenses for a specific project and VAT as relevant.
2 Day rates are based on 177 paid days work for the artist per annum. If artist is likely to gain fewer days work, the day rate can increase accordingly.
3 10+ years experience rate depends on external factors including an artists art world track-record and/or unique attributes, market forces. See The artist as a self-employed specialist in Good practice in paying artists for types of overhead and sample costs.
4 Rates assume suitable professional conduct by artist. See Code of Practice for the Visual Arts with versions for artists and arts organisations on www.a-n.co.uk
What do others say about the value of artists?
Placing artists at the centre
The artist is the life source of our work. In the past, we have mainly funded institutions. Now we want to give higher priority to the artist.
Ambitions for the Arts, Arts Council England 2003
Artists vital to society
Artists activities should be regarded as professional, legitimate, vital to a civilised society and deserving of due recognition, recompense and presentational support.
Scottish Arts Council submission to the Cultural Commission of the Scottish Executive 2004
Highly skilled artists
The overall picture that has emerged is of a highly-skilled, highly motivated cultural work force making artistic, social and economic contributions to society, despite significant personal challenges.
Making Their Mark, audit of artists in Scotland 2003
Sharing ideas with an artist is so much more enriching, and far more satisfying because you get... a new shared thinking. This opens up far more possibilities and new ways of working.
Sonja Adams, teacher, Glenbrook Primary School, Nottingham, CreativePartnerships project.
Good practice resources
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Richard Murphy, Susan Jones, Susan Baines
Edited and compiled by Susan Jones with contributions from Susan Baines et al and Richard Murphy.
First published: a-n.co.uk March 2005. Updated for 2007/08 September 2007.
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