The art trade has long been considered an "exceptional economy," but how exceptional is it really – and why? This course will provide an overview of both classic and contemporary business frameworks and will use them to explore the art world’s many businesses, such as galleries, auction houses, storage facilities, insurance providers, and more. Site visits, classroom lectures, and guest speakers will engage with how each business positions itself strategically within the industry, identifies and reaches a target market, and how these activities both conform to and diverge from standard business models. By the end of the course, participants will have both a clear overview of the field of art business as well as a nuanced understanding of its particular challenges and rewards.
To complete the course, students will be asked to build a business plan for the creation of an art gallery using the notions and key principles learned during the classes and present it at the end of the course. This case study will demonstrate what skills and assets are necessary to create and drive a healthy business in the art industry.
Students will learn:
- To identify the various actors that comprise the art trade and how they interact.
- To understand how each business within the art world positions itself strategically within the industry, identifies and reaches a target market, and how these activities both conform to and diverge from standard business models.
- To analyze a wide array of art businesses to assess their strategic positioning and marketing effectiveness