Artists as employees? How does that work?

The same as any other job. We have a position to fill. We advertise. We accept resumes and portfolios, and we interview and hire. The artist gets a salary, a space to work, health insurance, and guidance from mentors.

You're putting artists in cubicles?

NO! That thought makes us cringe. The idea is to provide space to work - sanctuaries - that promote collaboration and productivity. Image a writers' retreat, except the artists are PAID to work and it's not a temporary one year grant or funding that needs to be renewed. Imagine an over-sized studio where visual artists can share ideas and inspiration AND get paid. We're taking a corporate idea and turning it on its head.

Who owns the copyright?

MdB owns all copyrights, and shares royalties with artists. Royalties are for life and slightly beyond, so if an artist leaves MdB, they still get paid their royalty share. We want our artists to succeed. Without artists, MdB does not exist.

What does MdB do with its share of royalties?

We sponsor other artists. An artist - writer, painter, sculptor - works with the hope of being paid for their work. They create with the hope that they'll produce something to sell. That's not how most jobs work. Lawyers, analysts, accountants: they're all hired, paid a salary, and given time to develop their skills. They go through internships and training - usually while being paid. Why can't we do that for artists? 

Think of it like R&D as in a healthcare companies. They spend millions of dollars on research and development every year. Most ideas don't pan out. And the ideas don't all need to pan out. The company only needs one or two big sellers, and they can fund years and years of research. We want to do the same thing. But with artists. We want artists to have freedom to work, to get paid, and not be be focused on what will sell. We want them to create the works that speak to them. We'll worry about selling later.

What if an artist doesn't produce?

MdB strives to provide a nurturing environment. We work with artists to understand their needs and what might be interfering with their work. We find ways to offer support and encouragement. We also understand that artists will have varying levels of commercial success, and that "quality production" does not always result in large sales. Like any other job, an artist could be fired, but that's a worst case scenario. We prefer to re-purpose employees, have them contribute to other areas of the business like editing or creating public displays, designing, anything that might interest them. This is a company of opportunities not limitations.

Have another question?

Subscribe and be the first to hear our latest news!

We'll send updates on investments, publications, and new spaces!