Taking Note: Among Artists, Multidisciplinary Practice May Be the Norm—Not the Exception


February 12, 2019

The National Endowment for the Arts is on the verge of releasing an omnibus research report on artists and other cultural workers, based on statistics from various federal data sources.

Readers familiar with U.S. stats on artists will appreciate that, whether from choice or need, these workers are irrepressibly agile when it comes to curating their careers. High rates of artist self-employment and part-time employment, relative to other workers, support this view. So does the well-documented tendency of artists to “cross over” from one industry or sector to another.

To an extent, these characteristics have shaped popular narratives about entrepreneurship in the 21st century. (After all, why do they call it the “gig economy”?) But rarely do we as researchers consider the degree to which artists flit not just across sectors or employers but also across genres and disciplines.

Read the full post here.