Name: Tazie Taysom
Job title: Art Consultant
Time in current role: 9 months
Tazie is a consultant at art consultancy and rental agency ARTIQ.
How did you land your current job?
Whilst studying for a History of Art degree at University College London, I interned at Sotheby’s and a few other private galleries. The commercial art world always appealed, and getting this experience was vital to realising that big corporations weren’t for me. Whilst the overall industry was very attractive, I knew a more innovative working environment would suit me better.
The art world can be tough, and by cutting out one of the largest employment sectors available (auction houses) I knew I had to get experience elsewhere and chose initially to go into headhunting. Listening and learning is great, but for me being in the firing line is always the best way to develop quickly and so I threw myself into the sales industry, getting promoted within four months of arrival and soon running my own team. Relationship-building was key to the role, and a few years later I decided to utilise this experience and re-enter the art world.
I applied for a role with ARTIQ, the UK’s leading art rental consultancy. They were seven years old with a dynamic start-up feel and an impressive client list. It’s important in the arts to hold your own and stick to your guns; company culture and innovative practice were my motivations for moving and I knew at once ARTIQ was the place for me.
What are the key functions of your role?
My role is two-fold. I run the Account Management function, working with our existing rental client base for whom I curate new art collections every six months. As part of the account management programme, we’ve developed a private membership arts scheme which is all about engaging our clients and their teams in experiencing and engaging with art in a more direct way. This means I get to organise a huge range of events, from private viewings to cocktail experiences and dinner parties.
Talk us through your typical day at work
I’m passionate about maintaining a good work-life balance and luckily our organisation is incredibly supportive of this! My daily schedule differs all the time. If I’m heading into the office I’ll arrive at 8.30am or 9am, dealing with my emails en route. I might work on a curation project for a few hours and then head off to a site visit – either a workplace project that’s in construction phase or a residential property going through a rotation. It’s very varied.
I usually grab lunch on the way to a client meeting, or it’s ordered in if we’re having a team meeting to catch up on projects. It’s really important that I keep a tight grip on the large rotation schedule we have with our rental clients, so I check in on that regularly throughout the day.
If I don’t have an event in the evening I finish at 5.30pm and head back to South London to join family or friends for supper.
How would your colleagues describe you in three words?
Passionate, direct and positive.
Your favourite part of the job?
I love curating because you always get to see the end result. Pouring creativity and style into an art collection and seeing it become a reality is quite often just as glorious as stepping into your favourite museum collection.
…and the part you could do without?
I think it has long been acknowledged that numbers and excel documents are not my forte.
Plans for the future?
We’re at a huge stage of growth and I’ll be growing the Account Management function within the business over the coming years, ensuring that our quality of service is maintained whilst expanding the ARTIQ Experience Membership Programme and hopefully making it a nationally-recognised arts membership scheme.
Do you have any advice for others aspiring to break into your field?
The art world is notoriously tough, so don’t be afraid to look outside the box and find a disruptive and innovative company. Auction houses and private galleries can provide you great experience, but your success will be driven by making great contacts in the industry on a personal level! LLY