Djcnor’s Weblog

Arts and the economy

Posted on: November 25, 2008

It seems that when times get hard, the first thing to go is the arts. And yet, the arts should be the last thing to go. It is the arts, in particular the practice of them, that will see people through the hard times in any number of ways.

I noted this story about London’s mayor’s plans for the arts during these hard times

http://www.thestage.co.uk/news/newsstory.php/22518/london-mayor-reveals-key-arts-priorities

and I think he’s got a start on the right idea in planning to improve music education and support grass roots arts, though I think it should go far beyond music.

In city after city after city, down and out areas have been revived by allowing the creatives to move in. When no one else can do it, we can, and I include myself among them. Why is this? Because folks in the arts tend to have ideas and then figure out a way, often an unconventional low-cost way, of gaining the skills to do what they have thought of. Artists build portfolio careers, their income coming from a number of sources, often a number of different skills. Over the years, the skills acquired to achieve their aims in the arts and the skills acquired for income stream purposes, so as to preserve as much free time as possible for the arts, and the skills acquired because they don’t have the money to pay someone to do what they need done, accumulate. The combination of a broad assortment of skills and knowledge, along with an active well exercised imagination are exactly what each and every household will need now.

And this is only the first way in which the arts will see you through. I’m going to do a series of posts on this subject, and I’d love to hear from those who think differently so as to hone my arguments and sculpt my ideas into a plan that is recognizable as practical by almost anyone.

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Djcnor’s Weblog

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