In 2022, women remain significantly under-represented and undervalued in museums, galleries and auction houses. Not only do the top 18 museums in the US have collections that are 87% male and 85% white, but art by female artists is sold 50% less than art by men. In addition, women account for only 16% of the NFT art market and 5% of NFT sales. Spurred by these shocking statistics, NFT marketplace Voice decided to do something to bring about real change. The result? The Voice x Women Rise project.
About Voice x Women Rise
To change the statistics and empower female NFT creators, Voice partnered with Maliha Abidi. Together, they created the Voice x Women Rise programme, which supports women creators from underrepresented and marginalized communities.
“The Women Rise NFT Residency was the third Residency program we’ve run, each custom built to help artists succeed in the current ecosystem. It consists of a series of virtual workshops, training participants to understand the NFT space and how to adapt their existing practice into a successful collection,” explained a Voice representative.
Voice not only offers a platform through its NFT marketplace, but also a stipend, mentoring and community building, as well as a bonus on sales. This is undoubtedly a positive move in an industry that is, unfortunately, still far from equal.
The themes chosen for this programme, namely, equity & justice, identity, future-proof, and well-being, reflect the values and vision of the Voice creators. “The topics selected emerged out of the 100+ artists we worked with in the Voice NFT Residency Raise Our Voice and Hear Us Now,” explains the Voice representative.
They continue: “The artists we worked with over the previous year told us what they care about based on the most relevant conversations happening in our world and their recent experiences as artists and humans navigating the COVID-19 pandemic and an increasingly digital world.”
Choosing artists for the residency programme
Undoubtedly, there are thousands of great female-representing artists out there. In order to filter through the noise, Voice conducted an open call for applications and made sure women around the world knew about the opportunity. Maliha Abidi served as a curator. As a result, the selected group represents different countries, art styles and artistic media. What unites them is the incredible story behind their collection.
“The Voice x Women Rise NFT Residents are from all over the globe, originating from and based in places such as Nigeria, Hong Kong, Guatemala, Kenya, and the U.S. The ability to connect with women from thousands of miles away on a shared mission is one of the best elements of the residency.”
Envisioning a better future
Excitedly, Voice is expanding on its Residency programme. Recently, they announced a forthcoming photography programme with PhotoVogue. This one-of-a-kind programme, curated by Alessia Glaviano, is set to expand the photography NFT space and encourage photographers to get involved in web3.
After all, Voice is all about empowering creatives. As the Voice representative asserts: “Our ultimate goal is for the artists in the program to feel confident in their collections, for them to successfully connect with collectors, and to jumpstart a love of the digital art space that will continue to help grow their careers.”