Intro to Working with Artists

“As a recruiter I find working with artist studios particularly rewarding due to the immense fulfilment in understanding each artist’s unique creative process and being able to connect artists with candidates who can fully enhance their work. This dynamic energy and the art that results from it are central to our industry, making recruitment for artist studios inspiring work to be a part of.” – Léa de Gramont, Consultant

 

Artist studios are the creative hubs where imagination becomes reality, and they offer a wide range of roles and responsibilities. Studios vary greatly in size and structure, reflecting the diverse needs of individual artists, and each employee within these spaces plays a crucial part in bringing artistic visions to life.


Early-career artists often work independently or with minimal support, laying the groundwork for their future projects. They may build a flexible in-house team and enlist specialists to meet exhibition or commission deadlines, while their galleries handle broader commercial tasks.

 

High-profile artists, at the peak of their careers, lead extensive teams. These studios often include administrative experts who focus on commercial development, project management, and operational support, all coordinated by a studio director. Mid-career artists typically employ a team of assistants and a smaller operations team, overseen by a studio manager.

 

Studio directors and managers have multifaceted roles that include oversight of production, management of the studio’s schedule and finances, and liaising with galleries, institutions, and private clients. They also manage the diverse studio staff, ensuring smooth operations.

 

Assistants play a crucial role in the studio environment, providing support either directly related to the production of artwork or in the artist’s personal and professional life. Artist assistants often engage in tasks such as canvas stretching, material preparation, finishing artwork, and managing packing, transportation, and installation. On the other hand, personal or executive assistants to the artist may handle travel bookings, manage correspondence, and assist with personal errands and tasks, ensuring the artist’s life and schedule run smoothly. In both cases, the contributions of assistants are invaluable.


With increased commercial agency, artist studios are evolving to enhance their capabilities. This evolution involves strategic hiring to strengthen the studio’s ability to navigate the complexities of the market. From early-career solo projects to high-profile collaborations, each studio offers unique opportunities for professionals to shape the ever-evolving narrative of the art world. 

 

SML and Artist Studios

SML works closely with artists worldwide to support the strategic growth of their studio teams. At the heart of the creativity that fuels the international art market, roles in artist studios are fast paced, engaging, and highly rewarding. If you are interested in working with artists or are part of a studio team looking to bring on new talent, get in touch!


Useful Resources
 

Photo Credits 

  • Khara Woods 
  • Ilia Zolas 
  • Laura Adai