The Agency works on a sustained, continuous basis with a small group of artists. Typically, each artist is contracted to The Agency for three years. The relationship is conceived as a collaborative partnership in which The Agency provides an an individualised on-going service that includes, as appropriate:
o Critical dialogue – both one-to-one and peer group;
o Identifying opportunities and planning exhibitions – including, for example, developing and pitching exhibition proposals to public and private organisations, liaising with curators and exhibition managers, and negotiating loan and consignment agreements and exhibition fees;
o Arranging studio visits, seminars and discussion forums with academic and industry professionals, including curators, writers, artists and collectors;
o Advising on pricing and editioning;
o Identifying and assisting with commission, grant, residency and award opportunities;
o Developing marketing plans (including the artist’s website and social media profile);
o Press profile and contact;
o Fund-raising and sales;
o Contract negotiation;
o Career and financial planning.
Although the relationship between the Agency and the artist is conceived as a collaborative partnership based on mutual respect, the practical details are summarised in a three-year exclusive contract. However, from the end of the first year, the contract may be terminated by either party giving three months notice. This provides a balance of sustained, yet time-limited, commitment and flexibility to terminate the relationship if circumstances change. Towards the end of the contract the artist and The Agency agree a plan for the end of the contract, including whether the artist is best served by commercial gallery representation, and The Agency’s role in securing representation for the artist.
The contract outlines the nature of the relationship between The Agency and The Artist. It summarises the services provided by The Agency and the obligations of and fees paid by The Artist. On signing the contract The Artist and The Agency undertake a comprehensive review of The Artist’s current portfolio of work, existing contracts, commitments and relationships, external profile (including website, social media and press coverage) and ambitions (in terms of their practice and how this relates to their life). The review forms the basis of a detailed one-year work plan and a more aspirational three-year plan. At the end of the first year, the situation is reviewed and the plans updated. If circumstances have changed the parties may chose to terminate the contract. Prior to the end of the third year, a plan for the end of the contract is agreed.