Assistant Professor of Visual Arts Administration
Amy Whitaker is an assistant professor of Visual Arts Management. She holds an MBA from the Yale School of Management and an MFA in painting from the Slade School of Fine Art at University College London. Her undergraduate degree is from Williams College, magna cum laude, in political science and studio art.
Amy's primary research concerns the overlap of artistic process and business structures. Her essay on "Ownership for Artists" was included in the book The Social Life of Artistic Property (Publication Studio, 2014), which ARTnews named one of "14 New Art History Books to Change Your Mind." Her first book, Museum Legs: Fatigue and Hope in the Face of Art (Hol Art Books, 2009), was recommended by the Association of Art Museum Directors and selected as the inaugural first-year read at the Rhode Island School of Design in 2010. Amy's book Art Thinking: How to Carve Out Creative Space in a World of Schedules, Budgets, and Bosses (Harper Business, 2016) is both a practical and philosophical guide to the central paradox of how creativity and the market come together.
Prior to her appointment at NYU, Amy was a member of the full-time Art Business faculty at the Sotheby's Institute, and taught pioneering courses in business as a design medium at the School of Visual Arts, the Rhode Island School of Design, and Williams College. She was also a member of the design strategy MBA faculty at California College of the Arts. Amy has designed the business curricula for the New Museum Incubator, where she was an entrepreneur-in-residence (2015-2016), and for the Lower Manhattan Cultural Council. From 2013 to 2016, Amy served as the President of the Professional Organization for Women in the Arts (POWarts.org). She has also served as a business mentor for the grantees of the Joan Mitchell Foundation and for the TED Fellows, and was the 2013 recipient of the Sarah Verdone Writing Award. Amy began her career working in art museums, including the Guggenheim, MoMA, and Tate, and for the artist Jenny Holzer. She has also worked in finance for the startup Locus Analytics, where she is named on a patent for the firm's economic classification systems, and for the investment management firm D.E. Shaw & Co., L.P.