IT’S never been easy to make a living as a creative being, and recent years have made it even more difficult for anyone without a trust fund. So I’m quite cheered by the recent appearance of a handsome, useful book, Living and Sustaining a Creative Life. Edited by the Brooklyn-based, Yale-educated artist Sharon Louden, it’s subtitled “Essays by 40 Working Artists.” (About half of them are based in New York.)
Part of what I like about the book (published by Chicago-based Intellect) is its balance between hard-headed pragmatism and idealism about the artist’s mission. It shares some concerns — the dangers of romanticism, the relationship of artists to the larger society — with my own upcoming book Culture Crash, though Louden’s book is more dedicated to seeking solutions.
Here’s my conversation with Louden.
Has the myth of the starving artist done damage to the way the public, and perhaps artists themselves, view the situation?
Did you hear about impact of the recession a lot? Are visual artists still feeling its sting?
What is the role of galleries and dealers in 2014?