Trained as an arts administrator and consultant, I familiarised myself with the business behind the arts - the institutions, the theories, the politics and the numbers. My degree in English literature and my experience as director of the Leiden Fund for Arts helped me understand the true essence of our 'business': the autonomy of the artist and his or her creations. With an understanding of both art and business, my aim is to help my artists develop artistically as well as financially.
Whereas most artist representation focuses solely on representation whithin one particular discipline (literary agents, band managers, gallerists, etc.), I feel the cultural sector needs an interdisciplinary approach in order to truly flourish. I envisage a situation where everybody involved can learn from other sectors, form alliances to broaden markets, and let the artists cross-over more often to make exciting and interesting new work.
That is why I represent a couple of great artists from different disciplines and places: a poet from Genua, a musician from Berlin and a visual artist from Leiden. By working closely with other parties involved in their respective sectors (publishers, galleries, venues, festivals, etc.) I will be in a position to keep an eye open for unconventional opportunities beyond the usual scope of a more limited perspective.
I am trained as an arts administrator and consultant, specialising in public-private collaboration, entrepreneurial development and regional cultural policy. How can the cultural sector broaden its market? How can governments or business achieve their goals through collaboration with the arts?
I have been director of the Leiden Fund for Arts & Culture (Cultuurfonds Leiden) until 2016. This unique foundation invests in professionalising the cultural sector and actively initiates collaborations between cultural organisations, business life and public institutions. Since the fund's particular mission and strategy has been recognised as good practice in The Netherlands, I regularly advice other cities on similar constructs.
I learned the 'trade' of arts administration by founding the Leiden International Film Festival with some fellow students back in 2006, of which I have been managing director until 2012. It is one of the fastest growing film festivals in Europe with an annual attendance of over 35.000 visitors. Meanwhile, I worked as a consultant and policy advisor with Bureau Blaauwberg, specialised in regional economic development. The synergy between arts & economics has fascinated me ever since. That's why a decided to get a certificate in Arts Administration at New York University in 2014.
I decided to combine arts management & consultancy with artist representation. These two different worlds (that of the art itself, and that of cultural policy and arts administration) are closely tied - now more than ever - and I am convinced a good arts manager has to understand both. I believe that great art deserves a great audience and I hope to contribute by helping artists, cultural institutions, governments and businesses to work together and invigorate each other.