First of all, what is the difference between an artist bio and an artist statement? The difference is not exact and clear-cut, but these are the definitions I have found which make the most sense:
Artist Biography: This is your basic life story as an artist, usually including where you were born, when you became interested in art, where you studied art, took acting or modeling classes, etc. (or if you are self- taught), your main area of art expertise (acrylic painting, sculpture, charcoal drawing, etc.), where you’ve shown your art (galleries and art shows) or awards you’ve received for your art, and anything else similar that you deem pertinent.
Artist Statement: An artist statement would basically be what inspires you as an artist, or an expression of your creativity and purpose as an artist. It is usually written in what I would call “flowery prose”, meaning bigger and more unique words than one would normally use. Writing an artist statement can help others connect with your work better and understand your artistic message better.
How to write an artist bio:
1. Since you may need to leave this with someone at a gallery and you’ll want them to be able to contact you, start with your name, website, email and phone number at the top.
2. Type out your story as an artist. As said above, you can include where you were born, when you started being an artist, what inspired you, your art education, art shows you’ve done, your favorite mediums, and your goals as an artist. You don’t have to include all of this, but you want to give the reader a clear picture of where you’ve come from and where you’re going as an artist. You do want to keep in brief (maybe a full page or less).
3. After you’ve written your bio, pass it around to friends and family and have them critique it. You want to make sure it flows nicely and communicates what you’re trying to communicate.
Here’s a good article for more info on writing an artist bio: http://www.ehow.com/how_2060971_write-artist-bio.html
Click HERE for an example of an artist bios.
How to write an artist statement:
1. First of all, artists usually aren’t the best at writing about their art, they’re just good at their art. So an artist statement can be a little difficult. Allow yourself to take time with it, probably a couple of hours, but maybe even weeks or months. If you find yourself working on it for a long time, simply keep a notebook with you or in your art studio and when you feel inspired about a piece of art or artistic subject, write it down.
2. Keep it simple. If readers can’t understand you, it usually annoys them instead of making them think you’re super educated and professional. Feel free to use more unique words than usual, but don’t go our of your way to use large words or complex phrases that hardly anyone would understand.
3. Write it from the heart. What really inspires you as an artist? Why do you create what you create? What message are you trying to pass on in your art?
For more information on writing an artist statement, here is a good site:http://www.mollygordon.com/resources/marketingresources/artstatemt/
I found two good sites that actually show you both an artist statement and bio, so you can compare them: