Following the centuries-long tradition of artists-entrepreneurs, since the beginning of his career, Žak has greatly enjoyed creating his own arts ventures, resulting in a wealth of experience and a track record of success in the area of arts entrepreneurship and arts management. Relevant experience includes setting up and managing companies and charitable organizations in the arts sector, including developing internal structure, fundraising, sales, and PR, among others. Due to this experience, in 2016 Žak was invited by Rhodes College in Memphis, TN, to develop a course that will help students identify and develop methods to apply their creative abilities in practical ways and to introduce the entrepreneurial process in the context of the arts industry.
Following this invitation, Žak developed a course of study that teaches students how to create their place in a competitive environment, network, write a project proposal, prepare a budget, research funding options, and develop a marketing plan, in addition to other skills. The course readings, lectures, and assignments provide the necessary knowledge of arts and business practices which are particularly useful to students preparing for a self-managed career where their income is generated from performance, recording, composing, scriptwriting, and/or organizing arts events or setting up an arts-related business enterprise. Guest speakers share their expertise and provide invaluable contacts for students.
The course has been a considerable success and saw several students jumpstart their careers by using their final projects in a real-world setting. Highlights of student achievements include winning a CD recording contract, winning a publishing contract with a well-known publisher of comic books, creating a talk-show demo and pitching it to major networks, creating a concert series, and so on.
Žak currently offers lectures and talks in the area of Arts Entrepreneurship internationally. For further information please contact Žak here.