Friday, December 29, 2006

So, I'm completing the Gift of Freedom grant application from A Room of Her Own Foundation. And I check out their webpage on statistics about women in the arts. Here's what I found:

  • Only 9 out of 52 winners of the National Book Award for Fiction are women.
  • Only 11 out of 48 winners of the Pulitzer Prize for Fiction have been women.
  • Generations of students studied art history with a text that did not include one woman artist—Mary Cassatt, Georgia O’Keeffe, Louise Nevelson and Lee Krasner were all excluded.
  • Women writers won 63 percent of the awards but less than 30 percent of the money in awards and grants reported by Poets & Writers. (January/February 2003 issue)
  • In 2002 all but one of the Pulitzer Prize finalists for Fiction and Poetry were male.
  • 94 percent of all the writing awards at the Oscars have gone to men.
  • Of the major artists represented by major New York galleries, only 16 percent are women.
  • Only 25 percent of the advisory members of the National Endowment for the Arts are women.
  • A recent study by the Coalition of Women’s Arts Organizations showed that in all one-person shows for living artists in American museums, only 2 percent of the featured artists were women.
  • A 1992 study showed that only 17 percent of artists in galleries nationally were women, whereas the Bureau of Labor indicated that 48 percent of professional American artists were women.
  • 51 percent of all visual artists are female and women hold 53 percent of art degrees, but 80 percent of art faculty members are male.
  • 68 percent of total art income in the U.S. goes to men and 73 percent of all grants and fellowships in the arts go to men.

I don't have the original sources for these statistics, but I'm appalled!!! APPALLED at the state of things for women in the arts. It's what makes our efforts doubly important and despite the difficulties, so, so necessary. And then we wonder why we're struggling when the powers that be are still dominated by patriarchial structures/values/norms. Hmph.

Oh, and let me not comment on how these statistics would look if we add race and sexual orientation into the mix. As T.B. said, "We're always being quartered." Ouch, but...

On that note, may 2007 bring lots more support for women in all of the arts, for people of color and lgbt folks. May this year allow for abundance, vision, independent thought and free will. And love. Lots and lots of love.


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