Updated: Apr 20
Trends being cyclical is an undeniable reality. Everything from fashion, to industrial design, to music, all seems to pulling from the past and just calling it vintage. This is most likely because there are only so many variables when it comes to color, materials available, etc. At a point the only way to innovate is to reintroduce things and present them now in a new light. In a previous article I wrote about the idea that the post modern movement has brought innovation in contemporary art to a halt and is causing a pause in the cycle of styles. But that is an article all its own. This article is focused on the market rather than the actual trends. The way that we make, buy, and simply interact with art is right at the point of starting over.
There has never been a better time to be an independent artist than now. Artists today are getting close to having everything that they need to take control of their careers available to them. Of course the new Plebeian website will be one of those resources. And no, I am not trying to make the argument that our platform has created a market and the tools for artists that is the best we've ever seen. Rather it is the idea of the cyclical nature of history repeating itself, which makes now the pinnacle of art. From the looks of it the market is primed to return to the patronage structure.
Patronage allows the artist to create the demand for themselves. This would eliminate almost entirely the need for gallery representation and dealers. To some extent artists today are reliant on an entity bringing an audience to their product. Reliance gives the said entity the power to gouge artists. No longer. What are we paying for? Why are we vying for approval? Validation? Is the commission really worth it? Maybe a decade ago when it was hard to get the word out about your new works. Getting pieces in front of the right people in order to sell was half the battle. This is no longer the case. You can create a social media account today and run a sponsored post to thousands of people by tonight. Realistically more effective than being represented by a small gallery. Your work paying their bills. Plebeian is hoping to be ahead of the cycle. We can return the market to be most beneficial to the artists together; the way that it once was.