Mr. Clayton W. Lord
2022 Trends That Will Impact the Arts
Mr. Clayton W. Lord
Now that we’re more than a quarter of the way through 2022, it seems like the perfect time for a post about trends that will impact the arts this year, right? But seriously—the world is moving so fast and seems so chaotic that maybe partway in is the perfect time to think about the trends happening around us and how they’ll carry through for the remainder of the year.
Through four months of 2022, the world’s humanity, energy, and focus are being tested—there’s an invasion going on, an election coming, a boom in art that exists only in bits and bytes, escalating weather and climate changes, a shifting labor market … and all this as we collectively emerge (maybe?) from two years of trauma.
Why do we publish an annual trends post? Because what happens to the world happens to us all. It can be difficult to set aside time and brain space, particularly at this moment, to think about what’s out there and what’s coming our way. But if we don’t carve out that time, we risk being caught by surprise. We gather these trends in an effort to make it easier for you (and us) to be prepared, anticipate what’s coming, and actively engage in crafting the future instead of just reacting to it. As an organization and a field, we need to cast our eyes forward to that messy horizon and try and glean what’s coming. That’s always hard, and perhaps never harder than when everything seems in flux. But why not try, all the same?
For our part, in addition to publishing these posts now we plan to look backward as the year closes to see how these trends manifested and what impact they’ve had (or not had) on the field. As you navigate your year, I’d like to invite you to write to me when any of these trends rear their heads in ways that impact you, and to offer up other things that you see coming in your community or in the country at large. I can be reached at [email protected].
The trends outgrew a single post—or even two posts—so after this introduction, four additional posts will go live over the course of this week, each one centered around one “uber-trend”: shifts in labor, work, and training; global and local unrest and dysfunction; the mainstreaming of digital everything; and the significant shifts happening in all things related to money.
While these themes capture much of what we see coming in the remaining months of 2022 and beyond, they aren’t comprehensive—just, perhaps, the most top of mind. Please do reach out as you think about these—and keep these trends in your back pocket as you navigate your year.