Art history sexism (ctd.)

June 5 2018

Image of Art history sexism (ctd.)

Picture: The Times

Regular readers will know that AHN has long taken a dim view of auction houses making their younger female employees pose in front of objects for press shoots. For examples of the practice, see here and my favourite here. And for a first hand account of what it's like to be asked to do it, see here.

But now, a victory - in yesterday's Times, David Sanderson reported that both Sotheby's and Christie's have decided to stop using 'art girls':

“We are moving with the times,” Sotheby’s said when questioned about the unusual publicity tactic.

Excellent news. I just have to get UK museums to abolish image fees, and then my work is done.

But wait - what's this?! The Tate gallery didn't get the memo. Here's a page from today's Times, promoting a new exhibition at Tate on paintings from World War One:

Come on Tate - take your lead from Sotheby's, and move with the times!

Update - a reader upbraids me:

It’s not sexist – and ageist – to assume that the young person included in the shot is not the relevant specialist, or in the case of a museum publicity shot, the relevant curator?  It sure is.

Although, in this case I'm fairly sure it isn't. And it's usually fairly evident, both in the posing and the captioning, when a specialist or curator is being photographed. 

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