Are you an upstart artist just getting going in the beginning of your career, only to find you should be concerned about retirement? Do you lack the investment capital because you're using it next month for rent?
A new company, MutualArts has recently created Artist Pension Trust that might afford you the opportunity.
The trust works by inviting artists to submit twenty works over twenty years to a tax free fund. The wager is that some of the individual pieces or bodies of work will appreciate significantly in value over two decades. Even though some artworks may never gain in value, profits are spread equally among the participants. So, if the market value one artist’s work goes through the roof in future, while market value on another artist’s work declines or remains idle, both will share a stake in the profits.
Artist Pension Trust's president, David A. Ross said, "It's a way of taking advantage of the capitalistic nature of the market and mix in a healthy dose of socialism to create a hybrid form," Ross, the former director of the Whitney Museum of American Art and then the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art.
The company has ambitious plans to create a string of non-profit trusts around the world, beginning in New York then expanding to Los Angeles, London, Berlin, Beijing, Tokyo, and Moscow. In the process, they say, they could create a billion-dollar empire controlling vast quantities of art. Artists create an enormous amount of wealth in their lives,” observes Mr Ross, “and this program is designed to allow them to participate in this wealth.”
The Fund will increase its membership 50 artists per year until the total reaches 250.
Artist Pension Trust
Image are courtesy of the Ambreen Butt, Artist Pension Trust, and Bernard Toale Gallery.