Here is a list of books I would recommend to anyone, who wishes to crush it, not only in the art business, but in life. From wonderful and insightful books about the art market and the secrets of the art world, to easy reads on marketing, finance and both physical and mental health. Enjoy!
A list of my favourite books for anyone who wants to step up their hustle.
I attached Amazon links, but you can probably find them in any bigger library or other online store. I myself use Amazon’s Kindle Unlimited, because I can get a book anytime of the day, and for about 8€ a month, they give as many titles as you’d like to read. Recommend checking it out if you’re in a place that supports it!
BOOKS ABOUT THE ARTISTIC PROFESSION
Seven Days in the Art World
Contemporary art has become a mass entertainment, a luxury good, a job description and, for some, a kind of alternative religion. Sarah Thornton’s shrewd and entertaining fly-on-the-wall narrative takes us behind the scenes of the art world, from art school to auction house, showing us how it works, and giving us a vivid sense of being there.
The $12 Million Stuffed Shark
This book is the first to look at the economics and the marketing strategies that enable the modern art market to generate such astronomical prices. Drawing on interviews with both past and present executives of auction houses and art dealerships, artists, and the buyers who move the market, Thompson launches the reader on a journey of discovery through the peculiar world of modern art.
Steal Like An Artist
When asked to talk to students at Broome Community College in upstate New York in the spring of 2011, Austin Kleon wrote a simple list often things he wished he’d heard when he was their age: ‘Steal like an artist; Don’t wait until you know who you are to start making things; Write the book you want to read; Use your hands …’
Show Your Work!
This book is about why generosity trumps genius. It s about getting findable, about using the network instead of wasting time networking. It s not self-promotion, it’s self-discovery. Let others into your process, then let them steal from you.
ARTHUR C. DANTO
What Art Is
What is it to be a work of art? Renowned author and critic Arthur C. Danto addresses this fundamental, complex question. Part philosophical monograph and part memoiristic meditation, What Art Is challenges the popular interpretation that art is an indefinable concept, instead bringing to light the properties that constitute universal meaning. Danto argues that despite varied approaches, a work of art is always defined by two essential criteria: meaning and embodiment, as well as one additional criterion contributed by the viewer: interpretation.
BOOKS ABOUT THE ART MARKET
Why Are Artists Poor?
Most artists earn very little. Nevertheless, there is no shortage of aspiring young artists. Do they give to the arts willingly or unknowingly? Governments and other institutions also give to the arts, to raise the low incomes. But their support is ineffective: subsidies only increase the artists’ poverty. The economy of the arts is exceptional. Although the arts operate successfully in the marketplace, their natural affinity is with gift-giving, rather than with commercial exchange.
Dark Side of the Boom
This book scrutinizes the excesses and extravagances that the 21st-century explosion of the contemporary art market brought in its wake. The buying of art as an investment, temptations to forgery and fraud, tax evasion, money laundering and pressure to produce more and more art all form part of this story, as do the upheavals in auction houses and the impact of the enhanced use of financial instruments on art transactions.
BOOKS ON OVERCOMING YOUR OBSTACLES
Whether you’re a graphic designer, a sales rep, an athlete, or an aspiring CEO, this fun little book will help you figure out if you’re in a Dip that’s worthy of your time, effort, and talents. If you are, The Dip will inspire you to hang tough. If not, it will help you find the courage to quit-so you can be number one at something else.
Tools of Titans
From the author: “For the last two years, I’ve interviewed nearly two hundred world-class performers for my podcast,The Tim Ferriss Show. The guests range from super celebs (Jamie Foxx, Arnold Schwarzenegger, etc.) and athletes (icons of powerlifting, gymnastics, surfing, etc.) to legendary Special Operations commanders and black-market biochemists. For most of my guests, it’s the first time they’ve agreed to a two-to-three-hour interview, and the show is on the cusp of passing 100 million downloads.”
From Marx to Murakami and Beethoven to Bacon, Daily Rituals by Mason Currey presents the working routines of more than a hundred and sixty of the greatest philosophers, writers, composers and artists ever to have lived. Whether by amphetamines or alcohol, headstand or boxing, these people made time and got to work.
DANIEL C. DENNETT
Intuition Pumps and Other Tools for Thinking
Thinking is hard. A few of us may be natural geniuses; others are blessed with reserves of willpower. Then there’s the rest of us: not prodigies and short on time, but still aspiring to understand the world. What can we do? Daniel Dennett, one of the world’s most original thinkers, reveals a collection of his favourite thinking tools, or ‘intuition pumps’.
BOOKS ON MARKETING AND STORYTELLING
Purple Cow describes something phenomenal, something counterintuitive and exciting and flat-out unbelievable. In his new bestseller, Seth Godin urges you to put a Purple Cow into everything you build, and everything you do, to create something truly noticeable. It’s a manifesto for anyone who wants to help create products and services that are worth marketing in the first place.
Tribes: We Need You to Lead Us
If you think leadership is for other people, think again – leaders come in surprising packages. Consider Joel Spolsky and his international tribe of scary-smart software engineers. Or Gary Vaynerhuck, a wine expert with a devoted following of enthusiasts. Chris Sharma leads a tribe of rock climbers up impossible cliff faces, while Mich Mathews, a VP at Microsoft, runs her internal tribe of marketers from her cube in Seattle. All they have in common is the desire to change things, the ability to connect a tribe, and the willingness to lead.
Linchpin: Are You Indispensable?
Seth Godin shows that the key to being indispensable is overcoming the fears that hold most of us back. If you have you ever found a shortcut that others missed, seen a new way to resolve a conflict, or made a connection with someone others couldn’t reach, then you have what it takes to become indispensable. It’s time to stop complying with the system and draw your own map.
This is Marketing: You Can’t Be Seen Until You Learn To See
This book teaches you how to identify your smallest viable audience; draw on the right signals and signs to position your offering; build trust and permission with your target market; speak to the narratives your audience tells themselves about status, affiliation, and dominance; spot opportunities to create and release tension; and give people the tools to achieve their goals.
The Medium is the Massage
Marshall McLuhan is the man who predicted the all-pervasive rise of modern mass media. Blending text, image and photography, his 1960 classic The Medium is the Massage illustrates how the growth of technology utterly reshapes society, personal lives and sensory perceptions, so that we are effectively transformed by the means we use to communicate. His theories, many of which are illustrated in this astonishing ‘inventory of effects’, force us to question how modes of communication have shaped society.
The Global Village
Marshall McLuhan’s posthumous The Global Village, co-authored by Bruce Powers, explores the new “laws” of media, “laws” fostering a dramatic collision of viewpoints. The first based on Visual Space – the linear, quantitative mode of perception characteristic of the Western world is preserved by the medium of print. While the second, based on Acoustic Space – the holistic, qualitative reasoning of the East – is being fostered by television, the technologies of the data base, communication satallites, and the globalmedia network.
Designing Brand Identity
The bestselling guide to branding, updated with emerging trends and technologies. Designing Brand Identity provides in-depth guidance for the entire branding team, with a universal five-stage process for brand development and implementation. From research and analysis through launch and governance, this book provides expert insight on all aspects of the process.
BOOKS ABOUT SOCIAL MEDIA
The Thank You Economy
The Thank You Economy is about something big, something greater than any single revolutionary platform. It isn’t some abstract concept or wacky business strategy-it’s real, and every one of us is doing business in it every day, whether we choose to recognize it or not. It’s the way we communicate, the way we buy and sell, the way businesses and consumers interact online and offline.
Jab, Jab, Jab, Right Hook
Thanks to massive change and proliferation in social media platforms, the winning combination of jabs and right hooks is different now. Vaynerchuk shows that while communication is still key, context matters more than ever. It’s not just about developing high-quality content, but developing high-quality content perfectly adapted to specific social media platforms and mobile devices—content tailor-made for Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, Twitter, and Tumblr.
In this lively, practical and inspiring book, Gary dissects every current major social media platform so that anyone, from a plumber to a professional ice skater, will know exactly how to amplify his or her personal brand on each. He offers both theoretical and tactical advice on how to become the biggest thing on platforms like Twitter, Facebook, YouTube, Instagram, Pinterest and Snapchat, podcast platforms like Spotify, Sound Cloud, iHeartRadio and iTunes and many others.
BOOKS ON PHYSICAL AND MENTAL HEALTH
The Way of the Iceman
While Wim Hof himself has run marathons in -30 degress Celsius in shorts, swum hundreds of meters under the ice, sat in a tank of ice for 90 minutes without his core temperature changing, and boosted his metabolism by more than 300 percent, The Way of the Iceman documents how anyone can use Wim’s methods to transform his or her health and strength quickly and safely.
What Doesn’t Kill Us
Investigative journalist and anthropologist Scott Carney takes up the challenge to find out: Can we hack our bodies and use the environment to stimulate our inner biology? Helping him in his search for the answers is Dutch fitness guru Wim Hof. Carney also enlists input from an army scientist and ordinary people who have documented how they have cured autoimmune diseases, lost weight, and reversed diabetes.
The Mind-Gut Connection
Combining cutting-edge neuroscience with the latest discoveries on the human microbiome, a practical guide that conclusively demonstrates the undeniable biological link between mind and body. Dr. Emeran Mayer, executive director of the UCLA Center for Neurobiology of Stress, offers a revolutionary look at this developing science, teaching us how to harness the power of the mind-gut connection to take charge of our health.
The Oxygen Advantage
These easy-to-use techniques can help to reduce your breathlessness, improve your sleep as well as reduce anxiety and stress. Drawing on his own experiences as an ex-asthmatic and the work he has done to help athletes and asthma sufferers alike to achieve greater fitness, Patrick shows you the key to a healthier, fitter you.
ALEXANDRA DAVID NÉEL
Secret Oral Teachings in Tibetan Buddhist Sects
This is an account of the Madhyamika (Middle Way) school of Buddhism, a method of mediation and enlightenment that was developed by the great Indian teacher Nagarjuna. These teaching are presented clearly and elegantly, intended for the layman who seeks a way to practice and experience the realization of oneness with all existence.
BOOKS ABOUT MONEY MANAGEMENT
Money Master the Game
Money: Master the Game contains expert advice for readers of every income level, providing guidance through the steps to become financially free by creating a lifetime income plan. This book delivers invaluable information and essential practices for getting your financial life in order.
Tony Robbins, arguably the most recognizable life and business strategist and guru, is back with a timely, unique follow-up to his smash New York Times bestseller Money: Master the Game. Market corrections are as constant as seasons are in nature. There have been 30 such corrections in the past 30 years, yet there’s never been an action plan for how not only to survive, but thrive through each change in the stock market.