How Do I Become an Artist Representative?

Jennifer Leigh

If you are interested in a career that delves into the business side of creativity, you should become an artist representative. Artist representatives handle various tasks for artists including negotiating contracts, publicity, and finding venues for shows. It is not necessary that you have a formal education in the subject, but obtaining a bachelor's degree in fine arts, music or a related field can help you to understand the industry better. There are jobs available at firms that represent artists or you could work independently once you have a good understanding of the business. Having a mentor in the field is helpful to teach you about the industry in order to become an artist representative.

Woman painting
Woman painting

You need to have a good understanding of the art industry before attempting to become an artist representative. This can be gained by working for another artist representative as an assistant or through an internship program. Working in an art gallery or a music studio would also be a helpful step, so that you can see how the business works on a day-to-day basis. Education is not necessary, though agencies are more likely to hire an individual with a college degree. A degree in fine arts, music or art history would be helpful in understanding the value of works of art and music, depending on which type of artist you want to represent.

In order to be successful as an artist representative, you should seek out a mentor to help you get started. A person already in the field might be willing to answer questions that you have and walk you through the process to become an artist representative. This can be accomplished by simply contacting current artist representatives and asking them if they would be willing to speak with you for a few minutes. Once you talk with them, you can explain your situation and ask if they would be interested in mentoring someone new to the field.

It is possible to find jobs at agencies as well as to work independently, depending on your personal career goals, but you usually need to begin your career working for someone else. You often have to work your way up in order to succeed in this competitive industry. If you want to work independently, the next step to become an artist representative is to start looking for talented people that you can represent yourself and to sign them to your agency.

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