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Let art do the work

Shortt, Harriet; McCabe, Karen


Harriet Shortt
Associate Professor in Organisation Studies

Karen McCabe


In today’s hectic working world, it can often feel like we’re spending more time in the office than we are in our own homes. It’s therefore becoming increasingly important for employers to do what they can to reduce stress, instil a sense of calm and create an overall better atmosphere, and art is one easy way to inject some life and energy into an otherwise purely functional space.
In our recently commissioned study we discovered over a third (37%) of Londoners think that art should be available in the workspace in a bid to reduce stress and improve productivity – with artwork deemed more desirable than the latest office crazes including sleep pods (with just 21% of the vote), ping pong tables (16%) and beanbags (13%).
When asked what genre of art London workers would like to see in their office spaces, landscapes topped the poll with the medium of paint proving popular alongside photography. And we think it's abstract pieces by the likes of Elaine Jones and Andrew Hood that could be amongst some of the most successful in inspiring a little desk-based escapism!
Despite the desire for change we found that 41% of office workers in London say there is no artwork in their workplace at all, with 59% unable to see any art from their desk.
We asked Dr Harriet Shortt, an expert on the workplace environment, to give us her thoughts on the matter:


Shortt, H., & McCabe, K. (2018). Let art do the work

Journal Article Type Article
Acceptance Date Feb 16, 2018
Publication Date Feb 16, 2018
Journal Affordable Art Fair: Art Advice
Peer Reviewed Not Peer Reviewed
Publisher URL
Additional Information Corporate Creators : Affordable Art Fair