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Institute for Capitalising on Creativity

Negotiating the tension between the artistic and economic

Photo by Emma FlynnCompeting logics and the artist's career

PhD StudentEmma Flynn

Dundee Contemporary Arts (DCA) provides opportunities for artists to create, and for audiences to engage with, a variety of exhibitions. The gallery is aware that many artists and collectors have limited understanding of the UK art market, with detrimental effects to their careers/collecting success.

Emma’s research will address the knowledge gap by examining the art market's demand and supply mechanisms and the roles of intermediaries who influence them, with particular attention to the issues of public and private. Her project will conclude with recommendations for business skills training for artists and development of a market for independent buyers.

The first year of Emma's CASE project included a busy round of visits to UK art markets:

The Ph.D. kicked off in 2009 with a number of fact-finding trips to London art fairs Frieze and Zoo, followed by a trip to see the Scotland+Venice presentation at the 53rd Venice Biennale, curated by Dundee Contemporary Arts - the project's industry partner. I was fortunate to see the work by Scottish artist Martin Boyce both at the Pallazzo Pisani as well as back in the DCA following its return from Venice. Both Frieze and Zoo were unique and individual experiences in themselves, from the cattle market hustling and bustling of the white-walled Frieze Art Fair in Regents Park, with gallerists paying up to £33,000 for a space; to the calmer Zoo Art Fair, in a block of dark and mysterious dilapidated Victorian buildings in London’s East end. By the end of the year I had thoroughly immersed myself in contemporary art from all corners of the world in dozens of different spaces, which has fuelled my research and given me plenty to think on in those moments in between reading and writing.

Photo: DCA curated Scotland's exhibition in the 2009 Venice Biennale, featuring artist Martin Boyce. Photo by Emma Flynn. 

Company Sponsors: DCA and Creative Scotland

Academic Partner: School of Management

DCA logo Creative Scotland logo  University of St Andrews  




Institute for Capitalising on Creativity
E: coca@st-andrews.ac.uk
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