Dutch artists over-represented in low income group

Yellow paintbrush on a watercolor palette
Yellow paintbrush on a watercolor palettesrikijtDepositPhotosDeposit Photos

Artists more often have a low income and are more often dependent on benefits than other employed persons in the Netherlands, despite being a profession with a high education level. In the period between 2013 and 2015, over half of artists earned less than 30 thousand euros per year. The average for all employees is 39 percent, and 17 percent for all highly educated workers, Statistics Netherlands reported on Friday.

There are well paid artists, but they are scarce. Only 15 percent of Dutch artists fall into the highest income category of 60 thousand euros or more. Of all highly educated workers, around 50 percent are in the highest income category. 

6.4 percent of artists are receiving some form of benefit benefit, compared to the national average of 4.4 percent and 2.4 percent among highly educated.  

Artists are also drawing the short straw compared to other workers in a creative profession, such as journalists and urbanists. About a fifth of them are in the lowest income category, and a fifth in the highest. This is comparative to the average among all workers. Music teachers and art teachers do not fall under the artists group in the Statistics Netherlands figures.