Changing Financial Structures: Survival Strategies and Admission Tickets

New transaction platforms in the arts offer alternative ways to monetise works, and can provide access for otherwise geographically and institutionally marginalised practitioners. Not all signals spring from the core of art, but the picture is diverse, and several examples point to artists who are less averse to the market than previous generations.

The societal apparatus and social changes are influencing art production, and artists need new ways to finance their artistic practice. While some make a project out of the need to sell their guitar to survive or move away from the city’s expensive rents, others become brands in themselves or jump on the NFT and cryptocurrency bandwagon. Signs of new funding sources that move away from the core of the arts are many and varied.

Destabilisation or temporary displacement?

Cryptocurrency and blockchain-based platforms create opportunities, but also downsides for artists exploring alternative ways to monetise their works. They represent both a survival strategy and new access for artists who may otherwise be geographically or institutionally cut off from the market, and calculated entrepreneurship for those who embrace the market as independent economic actors.

Is the entry of cryptocurrencies and NFT into the arts a revolution, or just a minor shift? Normalisation and absorption by conventional infrastructures are to be expected as the initial hype dies down, but the signs of artists who are less afraid of the market, and in some cases become the product themselves, point to a new economic reality for artistic practice.

Based on 14 signals