“I do not believe that human lives may be made the means for satisfying an artist’s desire for self-expression. We must demand, rather, that every man should be given, if he wishes, the right to model his life himself, as far as this does not interfere too much with others. Much as I may sympathize with the aesthetic impulse, I suggest that the artist might seek expression in another material. Politics, I demand, must uphold equalitarian and individualistic principles; dreams of beauty have to submit to the necessity of helping men in distress, and men who suffer injustice; and to the necessity of constructing institutions to serve such purposes.”
Popper, Karl. The Open Society & Its Enemies. London & New York: Routledge, 2011.
As paired with this previous post:
‘But step back a moment. Would ending federal, i.e., taxpayer, i.e., your, money on entities like the NEA, the NEH, and the CPB be a bad thing?’
Here are two good reasons in favor of ending Federal funding:
- You will likely aid in making better art. Universities, museums and institutions don’t necessarily get along with the creative genius, nor in making something new. In fact, such institutions can stifle creativity by rewarding and amplifying current tastes and entrenching public sentiment into reefs, creating additional hurdles for talent to get where it’s going. State money, furthermore, is not a necessary condition of good art. In fact, it may be a necessary condition of bad art [addition: we can probably say that bad art is everywhere, but there’s rarely great art coming out of Federally funded programs].
- Incentives matter: The self-interested, ideologically driven and less-talented will have incentives to control the Federal bureaucracy and politicize the arts. They’re out there, and if you reward them with cash and status, you’ll get more of them (bad artists, ideologues, politicians and bureaucrats in an unholy cycle of Badness).
No one can speak for all the public, not even the artistic genius. Art-curators, docents, specialists and critics can do good [for art], but sometimes they can do bad. Individual talent, tradition, hard-work, groups of people, ideas, money and opportunities all matter, but how much exactly, is anyone’s guess.
Richard Serra was commissioned to put a piece in Federal Plaza, paid for the public, and some people didn’t like it.
It was removed. Serra felt railroaded. There was a lot of press and drama.
Pretty relevant, I’d say:
Also, this Vincent Gallo interview is funny as hell:
He takes the critics on while wearing an awesome USA track-suit:
Related On This Site: Repost-From Poemshape: ‘Let Poetry Die’
They’ve got to keep up with the times:A Few Thoughts On NPR And Current Liberal Establishment Thinking Under Obama
From 2 Blowhards-We Need The Arts: A Sob Story…A museum industrial complex…more complexes…who are the people museums should be serving? James Panero At The New Criterion: ‘Time to Free NY’s Museums: The Met Responds’