Press Release

New report shows that artists are getting poorer

30th November 2017 Download PDF 

Press release

30 November 2017

New report shows that UK artists are getting poorer: 82% now earn less than £10,000 a year

A new report published today by art marketplace Artfinder shows an increase in the percentage of artists earning less than £10,000 a year, up from 72% in 2013 to 82%. It’s also worse for women – with 83.6% earning under £10,000 (from 98% of respondents who stated gender).

The Independent Art Market report, compiled by Artfinder and partner organisations including Artrooms art fair, Vango Art and art education business Be Smart about Art, aims to lift the lid on an emerging ‘independent artist market’ – that is artists who are selling their work directly to consumers either as well as or instead of through galleries.

Jonas Almgren, CEO of Artfinder comments:

“The online art market grew 15% in 2016 to $3.75bn, making it an 8.4% share of the market as a whole. A large proportion of it is dominated by the high end, by the so-called ‘bricks and clicks’ players finally embracing online.”

“However, that isn’t the whole picture. There is a new independent artist market emerging too. There are now thousands of independent artists selling their art online, as well as the new demographic of buyers who don’t see themselves as traditional ‘art collectors.’ The fact that artist income as a whole is falling is something that should worry us all.”

Artist Fintan Whelan comments:

“Compared to 20 years ago, it’s not necessarily easier to be an artist, but it has changed a lot. There are more opportunities to get exposure, more ways to sell your work through online platforms, artist fairs and more show venues but also more distractions to take an artist away from the studio. The local artist who had a solo show and maybe two group shows a year has now become a global artist travelling between events and setting new goals while marketing their "brand".”

This is the first year Artfinder has published this report, which will become an annual report on the growth of the independent artist sector.

To read the full report please visit (available from midnight Wednesday 29 November).

For press information, please contact Jane Verity, Head of Comms for Artfinder:, +44(0)203 637 4235, +44(0)7854 759480

About Artfinder

Artfinder is the art marketplace.

We’re on a mission to create a world where everyone owns art. A world where independent artists can make a living doing what they love.

Founded in March 2013 and based in London, Artfinder connects people to artists and art. For all tastes, all budgets, all styles. From everywhere and for everyone. And every single piece signed by the artist.

The site is growing fast, currently connecting 600,000 subscribers around the world with:

• 10,000 artists and galleries internationally • 400,000+ artworks in categories including painting, printmaking, photography, sculpture, drawing and collage