The Countess Report 2022

The Countess Report is a comprehensive report on gender representation in the Australian arts sector. It is compiled every four years and has become the most influential data set driving change in the Australian visual arts. Sheila has been a proud supporter of the Report since the release of the first Countess Report in 2016.

The latest Report is co-edited by Miranda Samuels and Shevaun Wright and covers the calendar year 2022.

The report analyses gallery and museum exhibition data as well as data on artist education, prizes, funding, organisational governance, collection acquisitions, and commercial gallery representation from across Australia in the calendar year of 2022. It covers institutions of all sizes and budgets: artist run initiatives, contemporary art spaces, commercial galleries, public galleries, Aboriginal-owned art centres, university art museums, major museums, and state galleries. Data on approximately 22,000 artists across more than 450 galleries and arts institutions was manually counted and verified.

Unfortunately, this year’s Report reveals that, after some progress last decade, gender equity has stagnated, particularly in exhibitions and acquisitions by state-funded galleries and major museums.

In an ideal world, the work of Sheila would be redundant. But as this latest Count shows, our important programs and advocacy are still vitally needed!

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What’s it like for a young woman artist trying to make her way in the artworld of today? Bella Chidlow is a recent art school graduate interning with the SHEILA Foundation. Here

“The Australian slang term ‘sheila’, a derogatory term for a woman, is a relic of another, more sexist time. But, like other contested words, it has been reclaimed and reappr