Have you ever dreamed of having dinner with Robert Gober? Or grabing a beer with Gina Beavers? Well don’t worry—you don’t need to shell out money for plane tickets or a round of drinks any time soon! These art-centered podcasts offer the opportunity to eavesdrop on one-on-one conversations between legendary figures, emerging artists, and intelligent (but understandable) critics and historians. Whether you’re looking for something to listen to on your morning commute or when you’re working late in the studio, these podcasts are a perfect companion.
The Conversation: Art Podcast
The Conversation is true to its title, as artist Michael Shaw spends an hour (or sometimes two) spitballing with artists, curators, dealers, and collectors. Shaw isn’t afraid to delve deep, touching on not just the high-points, but also the plateaus and more controversial moments in his guests’ careers. The Conversation attempts to peel back the curtain on the elusive inner-workings of the art world by staging honest discussions that are anything but stodgy.
Bad At Sports
Bad At Sports is a freewheeling podcast that offers “contemporary art talk without the ego.” The interviews sound like friends catching up over a beer or two—casual and fun but not afraid to meander. For instance, Caroline Wells Chandler talks about being mistaken for an employee at Jo-Ann’s Fabrics while shopping for materials. Based in Chicago, Bad At Sports has been producing episodes for over a decade—giving them a hefty backlog for a new listener to rifle through.
The Modern Art Notes Podcast
Hosted by: Tyler Green
Recommended Episodes: #281: On Trump’s Attempt to Eliminate Federal Arts Programs, #235: Kerry James Marshall, Katy Grannan, #155: Robert Gober
Modern Art Notes isn’t dedicated solely to modernism, but they do tend to feature older, more established artists and curators who are on the heels of an insitutional exhibition. Tyler Green, an art historian and critic, traces through the guest’s entire biography, attempting to cover every important body of work in the process. The show is extremely informative, each episode acting more like a catalog essay than a typical Q&A. The Wall Street Journal once remarked, “You won’t find a better-informed art writer than Tyler Green,” and the podcast definitely showcases his encyclopedic knowledge and skillful way with words.
With only two episodes in, Art Party is a podcast to keep an eye on. ARTnews co-executive editor Andrew Russeth and Interstate Projects co-director Jamie Sterns started the show last month, and cover newsworthy happenings in the art world. They intersperse the reportage with their own strong opinions—Sterns’ take often containing a few more profanities than Russeth's. Similar to Bad At Sports, Art Party is relaxed, hilarious and unabashed. “If you love us, then love us,” Sterns says in the first episode, “If you don’t…I don’t care either.”
Hosted by: Rotating hosts
Recommended Episodes: The Diamond Stingily Show, It's Fine with Sam McKinniss and Sarah Nicole Prickett, Cheap Talk with Piper Marshall
Even though Know Wave is not technically a podcast series, it is worth mentioning for its dearth of artist-hosted programming. Established by the L.A. gallery Moran Bondaroff in 2012, Know Wave is an online radio station tied to Downtown culture (making it effortlessly cool). The station’s laissez-faire attitude, mixed with the contributors’ creativity and gusto, makes for a fun mix of the unexpected. Thankfully, Know Wave is all digital, meaning the radio shows are recorded for posterity—available to listen to at any time.
KCRW Art Talk
Hosted By: Edward Goldman and Hunter Drohojowska-Philp
Notable Episodes: These photographs remind us who we are, and were we came from…, R.H. Quaytman at MOCA and Michael Heizer at Gagosian, Compassion and Empathy through Art
Clocking in at five minutes or less, KCRW’s Art Talk is a nice bite-sized podcast to throw into the mix. Coming out twice a week, the podcast alternates between hosts Edward Goldman and Hunter Drohojowska-Philp. Goldman, with a thick yet soothing Russian accent, offers weekly Andy Rooney-style recaps of his experiences in the art world. Drohojowska-Philp often provides historical background and context for shows at large galleries and major museums—a nice primer (or refresher) before heading out to see the hottest shows.
It’s often awkward to ask friends about their financial situation, but Australian artist Honor Eastly is not afraid. More interested in her guest’s hustle than their practice, Starving Artist features young (Australian) professionals talking frankly about money—how much they make, how they file their taxes, and how they plan for the future. In an enlightening episode with i-D editor Wendy Syfret, the two discuss negotiating a raise and determining your “value” in a field that is often underpaid and overworked. The podcast is worth checking out—whether you’re a recent grad looking to enter the job market or a young professional trying to navigate your next career move.