Art is worth more than just mere exposure

It is hardwork and creativity

September 5, 2019
Lyzanette Padua

There’s something incredibly quixotic about art – it visualizes things in the best possible light. It allows people of all genders, sizes, races and walks of life to express themselves through crafts they create. Art can never be duplicated – though some may attempt to replicate – as our footprints are embedded in each piece we create.

However – drawback of every passion is just inevitable and cannot be evaded. When it comes to struggling artists trying to crawl their way up to find success in their area of passion, a big break can be precious in making their dream more viable. The right gig or art event can hurtle an artist out of the relegation of a leisure and into the realm of a career. However, after all the time and effort put into honing a craft, one of the most exasperating and disheartening things an artist can hear is, “We can pay you in exposure.”

“Exposure” is an all-time favorite jargon of café owners, event promoters and other ‘’would-be’’ sponsors who falsely believe their courteous allowance of opportunity for artists is ample payment for services performed.

The intention behind these kinds of offers is not inherently malicious but is certainly benighted. For many artists — while the dream of someday receiving prevalent acclaim is a favorable endgame, there are other rationales for creating and performing which cannot be satisfied by mere exposure.

Artists, like most people, have necessities to sustain and the need to make it through the week. Despite promoters extolling about the exposure, it is never enough for an artist to use it to pay rent or buy food. If artists do not have a revenue stream to pay for their essentials, the promise of stardom is simply unattainable.

The prominent substitute is to pay artists instead of relying on exposure. Something cool about monetary payment is it enables artists to continue living and following their dreams and ambitions, in addition to receiving the exact same exposure as if they were not paid.

Artists are commonly assumed to be the exception to the rule of paying people for working – but this is just a wrong approach. Moral finger-wagging has never won any argument. There is not a single engineer, lawyer, doctor, or any other profession imaginable who would ever be expected to execute a professional service free of charge for the sake of mere exposure.  Art can and should be enjoyable and fun for the artisans but in the end, it is belittled by patrons.

Everyone relishes and consumes art in different forms. Without creative artisans, there would be no art and the absence of art makes a society devoid of anything worthy of maintaining and or any form of creativity.

To nurture this salient component of our world, promoters and or/sponsors must pay artists in more than just the vague promise of exposure or recognition.  Artisans put incredible effort and time into making our world vibrant and exquisite. Let’s not just put the limelight to these bright minds but also give them the credits they deserve.


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