Monday, April 04, 2011

A Rant about cuts in the arts support

The arts are essential in the sense that they are what create and reflect the cultural life of the society we live in. If you ask the question do we need the arts or, say the social services..., then I reply we need both because there is no point in just clinging on to an empty and barren existence. Most arts organisations have had to be extremely entrpreneurial over the last twenty years because all public funding comes with a requirement to raise matching funds from businesses, private investors and paying audiences. And I have never ever met a 9-5 artist. Those who live by the arts do so heart and soul 24 hours a day and any income received goes nowhere near matching the effort of production. Public subsidies enable us to keep being creative in those areas where the public have not yet realised what is possible. It is the equivalent of an ipad - who knew they needed one before one was produced? But once on the shelves everyone has to have one. But the ipad is produced only with the input of zillons of dollars of investmentbeforehand. Public subsidies provide us a small part of that investment. (Incidentally, I do not receive any public subsidy directly or indirectly myself)

No comments: