Art and the Entrepreneur

How is this age of the entrepreneur changing what it’s like to be an artist? There’s an interesting (and long) read in the Atlantic about just that called “The Death of the Artist—and the Birth of the Creative Entrepreneur.

For those who keep up with cultural trends, it may seem sort of obvious, though it is always good to take a step back and look at what’s happening from a different angle. The piece really resonates with me though because so much of what is described is reflected in the work of the people featured here on this site, and those I meet elsewhere around the city. This line is dead on: 

“Entrepreneurialism is being sold to us as an opportunity. It is, by and large, a necessity. Everybody understands by now that nobody can count on a job.”

The new American worker has to hustle. Everyone I know who is starting a company, is also doing a million contract jobs on the side to keep up with rent, health insurance, etc. No matter if they’re an artist, an entrepreneur, maker, or whatever.  

Is this new? I always thought that bands were a lot like startups. The Rolling Stones may be some of the best entrepreneurs of our time. In many ways there’s really no difference between the artist and the entrepreneur who both seek to create something great so they can craft their own futures, unbound by working for someone else.