Women demand their due

Michele Preds campaign is encouraging women artists to raise their prices by 15% on Equal Pay Day Courtesy of Michele Pred

Some people look like they are made of money. Then there is Oakland artist Michele Pred, ready to make the rounds at Frieze this week in a dress covered with dozens of pink dollar bills, each stamped: “EQUAL PAY”. Her appearance is the kick-off to a larger project in which she asks women artists to raise their prices by 15% on the same day—31 March, Equal Pay Day in the US—in a concerted, attention-getting attempt to close the gender pay gap for artists.

Best known for politically pointed work like her feminist-slogan handbags, Pred hopes that this project, The Art of Equal Pay, will effect some real-world change. “I felt that I needed to do something even more action-oriented this time,” she says. “For me, the pace of change on this important issue is agonisingly slow.”

At this stage, she is asking women artists, their dealers and potential collectors to sign a pledge on her website, theartofequalpay.com, to participate in the 15% price hike in March. Admittedly, the figure is symbolic (according to national studies, women on average make 79 cents for every dollar earned by men in the US) and probably less than the actual pay discrepancy for works sold directly by artists or through their galleries, since those numbers are not readily available. “We know the price gap between men and women artists sold at auction—around 47%,” Pred says. “But I didnt want to use that number because artists dont actually earn anything from auction sales.”

The artist Michele Pred Photo: Bud Snow

Pred hopes to have better data points on gallery sales to use later this year from Taylor Whitten-Brown, a sociologist and data Read More – Source

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