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Steep Job Losses For Artists. Survey Finds Two-Thirds Report Losing Job

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Painter Iva Gueorguieva works in Los Angeles on April 11 (Valerie Macon/AFP via Getty Images)
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More than 26 million Americans have filed for unemployment, as the jobless rate approaches an estimated 16%. A new report says one occupation is among the most devastated: artists.

Galleries are closed. Plays have been postponed. And no one is going to see the ballet.

It’s not too surprising, then, that a national survey of artists finds that nearly two-thirds of respondents have lost their jobs and 95% say they have lost income.

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Results of Americans for the Arts COVID-18 survey
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Their losses rival some of the occupations hit hardest by the pandemic, including restaurant workers. The survey of more than 11,000 artists was conducted by the advocacy group Americans for the Arts. It also found a majority of painters, sculptors and musicians can’t even get materials to make new work.

The Los Angeles Department of Cultural Affairs has a relief fund for artists whose planned performances here were canceled. But with the country boarded up for the foreseeable future, the picture won’t be pretty for the nation’s two-and-a-half million people who create for a living.

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