Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Data Study

A commenter made me curious what a woman critic's male to female review ratio might be, so I looked at the previous six months of Roberta Smith's NYTimes Art in Review contributions.

Roberta Smith contributed 35 reviews of single artist exhibitions to the Art in Review section of the NYTimes between May 23rd through November 23rd, 18 of which were reviews of female artists. I am pretty bad at math but that is clearly 50%!

The above tally is for reviews of a single artist only, no group shows and no reviews featuring more than one artist. If you include the two-person/partnership shows and reviews which note a second solo show within the same review (Fischli & Weiss, Matt Keegan and Jedediah Caeser, Dawit Petros and Bryan Jackson, Nick Z. and Kai Althoff) the total becomes 43 artists, 18 women.

Really good, right?

UNFORTUNATELY (for women), that is not an inclusive tally of Roberta's NYTimes writing within that period. It doesn't count any of the longer feaures/reviews she writes that are not part of the weekly Art in Review. This was a surprise -

11/23 Jeff Koons, 11/16 Lawrence Weiner, 11/08 Robert Greenwold, 11/02 Martin Puryear, 10/26 Georges Seurat, 10/20 Aleksandra Mir, 10/19 Gustav Klimt, 10/16 Damien Hirst, 10/13 Rudy Stingel, 10/5 Renoir, 9/28 Richard Prince, 9/16 Christoph Buchel, 8/23 Robert Gober, 8/17 Richard Pousette-Dart, 8/8 Morton Bartlett, 8/3 Peter Young, 7/25 Chen Chieh-Jen, 7/13 Martin Creed, 6/30 Daniel Gordon, 6/29 Rudy Stingel, 6/15 Neo Rauch, 5/30 Karen Kilimnik.

Twenty-two features/reviews, two of which are of female artists.


Susan said...

Hi Martin,
Nice post. Even today we need to do 'body counts' to ensure gender equity.
Let's 'Tai-Chi' it back to you. How's your gender equity ratio blog writing?

martin said...

i was wondering about that... probably about the same as both jerry and roberta, maybe 30% at most.

i don't really do many "reviews" though... plus, i really get involved with thinking about specific artists and their ideas, so i have probably thirty posts on just christoph buchel and richard prince... only one of which is actually on an exhibition (prince at the guggenheim).

but then again, nobody is paying me to be objective. don't think for a second that this blog is an objective look at anything... i'm an artist and this is a place for me to process and share, sometimes vent.

Anonymous said...

I think it's good to bitch about it, even if sometimes we are "part of the problem" as opposed to "the solution."

My own curating and interviewing was circumspect. There were more boys than girls, when all the adding was done. I had to ask myself just why that was. It's a long answer, but the short one is: because they are there. Brimming with confidence and yes, there were lots of women who just were not and it showed in everything they did - especially in how they pitched themselves. Or didn't.


babble wilhelm said...

This is such an interesting subject. I often think about situations like this and wonder how much of it has to do with genetics. Hierarchies people fall into with out thinking. Obviously there are plenty of social factors. Which ever one is more then the other humans have a way to deal with it. At some point in evolution people started putting ideas on a similar level to procreation. So if I am not completely off in the way I think about this, just talking about it can help make people conscious of their decisions and contribute to a slow change. (Joanne from previous posts comments) Possibly an astonishingly slow change. I think Martin is playing his role fine.

Susan said...

I linked your discussion to my blog: http://everythingisdangerous.blogspot.com

trabalho duro said...

you are kind of womanish,arent you,martin?

martin said...

yes? no? i don't know how to answer. what qualities are you ascribing?

your coyness is gay. i don't mean gay like homo, i mean gay like stupid.

Anonymous said...

critics, collectors, curators and artists do not have to be "equal" about anything. equality is not a meaningful distinguisher outside of political considerations.

bruce wilhelm said...

Its true that even if people ignore art made by women they can still write about art, buy art, pick art for shows, and make art. It might be a good idea to talk about things that people are doing and maybe not realizing so that they may become more aware of their own choices in the future.

Chris Rywalt said...

But what's Roberta's ratio of lousy artists to good ones? I'm guessing it approaches infinity if you leave out the dead artists.

By the way, I'm certain I'm not in your blogroll because I'm a woman.