This week we sit down with Matt Brown, the Director of Sales and Project Management, of Atelier 4. Matt has spent decades representing products & services across several industries and continents. He was hired by Atelier 4 in 2016 to optimize their project management team in their four locations by applying his knowledge and experience in sales management. Prior to that, Matt has lived in the US, Belgium and England in a variety of industries, from manufacturing to global logistics. We are really excited to share with you Matt’s unique perspective and diverse experience with you here!
What was your first job in the Arts?
Creating photographic special effects.
What was the most useful or important thing you learned at that job?
How to occupy my mind as I spent 47 minutes in total darkness, several times per shift.
Tell us a little more about yourself. When did you realize you wanted to pursue a career in this industry?
Well, I was kind of drafted into the industry… but I do like it!
What do you do now?
I direct a team of project managers to be the communication channel between A4 and our clients.
Where are you from?
What is the arts community like there?
Let’s say it was limited.
Has where you come from shaped what you do in the arts today?
What is the best piece of advice you can give about working in the art world?
It’s for those who love art and artists; others may feel unrewarded.
What is one of your greatest accomplishments in your career so far?
Opening a European branch for an American company, which grew the firm and got me relocated to Belgium and England for a few years.
What has been a challenge for you?
It would be easier to list what *hasn’t* been a challenge…
What is something you do every day at work?
Try to see the situation from the other person’s perspective.
What is one of the weirdest things you have had to do on the job in your career?
Prevent a cleaning crew from throwing away artwork they thought was trash.
What defines a good employee? What defines a good boss?
Good employees strive to improve their skills and support the company’s health. Good bosses determine the best course and lead the way along it.
What do you think makes a person hirable?
A genuine drive to work alongside others toward a common goal.
What is your advice to making yourself stand out in your workplace?
Simply do the best you can and remain utterly truthful (especially with yourself) about how satisfied you are in the role.
What are things you can do to proactively boost your CV?
Accept, and look for, new challenges.
Are there any tips you can give people entering the workforce?
Pay attention to how new processes or technologies may benefit the business, which is inevitably operating under an older set of conditions.
In your experience, what are things to do and things to avoid during an interview?
Do ask questions. Don’t bullshit.
Any other anecdotes about your experience in the art world that you would like to share?
Not without potentially offending someone…
What is the best exhibition you have seen in the last year?
Dale Chihuly at NY Botanical Gardens.
If you could own works by 5 different artists, who would be in your collection?
Anonymous, Lascaux or Chauvet Cave