Thursday, September 11, 2008

Arts Advocacy Update LVII

The content below is from Americans for the Arts' Cultural Policy Listserv, email blast of September 10, 2008:

Cultivating Demand for the Arts: Arts Learning, Arts Engagement, and State Arts Policy
RAND Corporation, 2008
"Audiences for classical music, jazz, theater, visual arts and other art forms have all declined as a percentage of the population in recent years, and as this new RAND report argues, reversing that trend will require more than simply expanding the supply of art and people’s access to it. It will also require cultivating more demand through arts education and other means to ensure that there are more people sufficiently knowledgeable about the arts to want to engage with them. This study, the third in a series by RAND on the evolving role of state arts agencies in building arts participation, examines what it means to cultivate demand for the arts, why it is important to do so and what state arts agencies and other policymakers in both the arts and education can do to make it happen."
Where is the action plan for making politicians understand this? I read through some of this, and I'm not seeing it. Great study, though.

Cultural Theme Planned for 2012 Olympics in London
ARTINFO, 9/5/2008
"The London Organizing Committee for the Olympic Games and Paralympic Games (LOCOG) announced on Thursday that it would launch a four-year program of cultural events to lead up to the 2012 Olympic Games. Designed to highlight the country's arts and culture, the $70 million project will comprise 500 events, including a Shakespeare festival and a light show at Windsor Castle, according to the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation."
What about a Shakespearean light show?

Drescher to become voice of US
Melbourne Herald Sun (Australia), 9/6/2008
"Television star Fran Drescher will serve as the newest envoy for US public diplomacy, with trips planned later this month to eastern Europe, the State Department said Friday. Star of the television comedy hit, The Nanny, Drescher will join baseball legend Cal Ripken Jr and US figure-skating superstar Michelle Kwan as envoys who help polish Washington's image abroad."
We come in peace. We bring you bagels.

Ballard's plan to cut arts funding by a third elicits outcry in Indianapolis
Indianapolis Star (IN), 9/9/2008
"Arts supporters and anti-tax activists sparred Monday over half a million dollars in the City-County Council's hearing on the city's proposed $1.1 billion budget for 2009. Mayor Greg Ballard's plan to cut public funding for the arts by a third, to $1 million, next year dominated the discussion by about 25 speakers in front of a crowd of roughly 100. The council is scheduled to vote on the budget Sept. 22 and is not expected to make major changes."
Red state = stupid. What's bizarre is that the mayor is cutting a tiny little portion of his budget. Why? Clearly he's arts-threatened and arts-unfriendly. Like I said, red state = stupid.

Our Arts Funding Quagmire
Hartford Courant (CT), 9/7/2008
Frank Rizzo criticizes Connecticut's "loopy two-tier funding for the arts." Permitting some organizations to circumvent the state's competitive arts grant funding by lobbying for a special budget line is "political, unfair and inefficient."
Right on, brother. Rizzo's usually on top of what's right.

Republican VP a Museum Foe
artnet, 9/4/2008
"Much of the copious news coverage swirling around Sarah Palin, Republican John McCain’s surprise pick for vice president, has focused on the relative inexperience of the freshman governor of Alaska. . . . However, the 44-year-old Palin had proven experience with one thing during her brief tenure in government: slashing museum funding."
The woman is a lying, sneaking, theiving, conniving, unethical, immoral nutjob. She is a menace to the nation. That's not misogyny. That's truth.

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