A Gallery ‘Hostess’ Job Advertised on the Arts Council England Site Is Being Shamed as Sexist
The London gallery's ad was quickly removed from the council's website.
An advertisement for a job in a new gallery in London’s Mayfair district has been called out for sexism. The ad was widely circulated on the Arts Council England’s website and Twitter feed but has since been removed from the site.
Eden Fine Art, which has multiple branches in New York, Israel, California, and St Barth, was advertising to fill a vacancy for “a hostess to greet clients at the door” of its new London outpost. The gallery is seeking candidates who “must look representative and be approachable.” The full-time position offers a salary of £15,000–20,000 for the service. (The starting point could be below the London living wage if the hostess is expected to work a 52-hour week.)
At least one Tweeter was quick to spot—and shame—the job ad, writing, “Sexist, much?!”
It was a rhetorical question, but it is worth noting that the wording of the ad could fall foul of the UK’s Equality Act, which states that job postings cannot give the impression that an employer intends to discriminate on the basis of gender or any other protected characteristic. The choice of the word “hostess” suggests that female candidates only need apply to Eden Fine Art.
When artnet News contacted Arts Council England earlier today, November 30, a spokesperson explained that the arts job listings are self-populated, meaning users advertising jobs post directly to the site. She added that they would “investigate immediately.”
The spokesperson later told artnet News: “Arts jobs listings are created by our users who are subject to a number of terms and conditions. While we do have checks in place to stop spam or offensive content appearing, sometimes posts slip through the net. We have since removed this advert.”
Eden Fine Art did not immediately respond to our request for comment. The gallery was founded in 1997 by Cathia Klimovsky, according to its website, and the London branch opened earlier this year on New Bond Street. The company describes the location as “the iconic street renowned for being a center-point of major auction houses and the most famous high-end luxury brands.”
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