art agent is an agent who represents artists. The agent functions by attempting to sell the works of an artist, or to otherwise find lucrative opportunities for the artist. The two parties have a contract worked out, where the agent takes a cut of the sales from any and all works, which may vary, depending on the relationship. Typically the range for a successful non-gallery sale is between 15% and 35% to the agent of the final sales price when the agent is responsible for bringing a buyer. Arts sales made at a Gallery are often split 50/50 between the artist or Trust and the Gallery.
It is in the art agent's best interests to sell the works of the artist. The relationship is seen as a win-win for both the artist and the agent.
Many unrecognized artists, no matter how talented, may find it hard to find an art agent willing to sell their works. Art agents select their artist not based on their talent but the likelihood their works will sell.[original research