[-empyre-] Prime Minister George Papandreou steps down

Renate Ferro rtf9 at cornell.edu
Mon Nov 7 09:14:11 EST 2011

Dear Yiannis and Helene,

I hate to interrupt the flow of your discussion right now but I'd love
to hear about what you think the effects of  Greece's Prime Minister
George Papandreou stepping down and how that may affect funding in
your part of the world? I realize that you are writing from Cyprus but
I'm curious about the news and how this announcement may network out
in terms of economic flow, culture, and art to the area?  Just heard
the news and wanted to take advantage of your being online.  Renate

On Fri, Nov 4, 2011 at 3:39 AM, NeMe <nemeorg at gmail.com> wrote:
> Hi Rachel,
>> "It is indeed difficult to entertain the protectionist and short-sighted art
>> industry notion that the politics of art funding (which I actually
>> interpret in a lot of this debate as 'the politics of art itself') was
>> 'never really a major concern until recently'."
> Your response interpreted our opening sentence out of context.
> As founders and directors of NeMe (registered in 2004), with its first
> funded project realised in 2006, provides Yiannis and I with a very
> recent history of experience with the whole process of funding and its
> associated bureaucratic and political complexities. I am sure that
> those who follow the activities of NeMe would have realised that our
> statement was a reference to our own experience and not a shallow
> statement to either “the politics of funding” nor, as you correctly
> state, “the politics of the art industry itself”
> In any case, these two concerns are not mutually exclusive as
> indicated by the history of patronage and certainly emphasised by the
> recent funding cuts. Funding has never been merely a ‘facilitator’ and
> as such, the politics of funding are firmly embedded into the politics
> of the arts industry.
> This discussion, or debate, if you prefer, has been initiated to
> explore current responses and critical thinking around the possibility
> of a new definition of ‘cultural value’ or a ‘re-definition of the
> arts praxis’. The recent funding cuts have generated concern regarding
> the relationship of visual culture and its relationship (or
> subservience) to economic-political objectives, as you quote, “...in a
> political milieu increasingly dominated by ideologies of culture-as
> service, knowledge production, as education itself is massively
> privatized and so on.”
> also Julian Oliver comments:
>> “It doesn't matter how intrinsically important these disciplines and their
>> representative institutions may be within the broader human project: it appears
>> some European countries are following the New World and rationalizing away from
>> support of the arts, perhaps ultimately preferring privatisation of the so-called Arts Sector altogether.”
> We live in a corporate controlled environment and this does place many
> cultural practitioners and institutions in a very difficult ethical
> position of articulating a more nuanced sense of their contribution to
> possible new models of perception in relation to our increasingly
> complex global environment or as Lyotard (1982) pointed out in his
> Affirmative Aesthetics, "the reflection of an increasingly fictional
> reality." Funding cuts have made this concern even more urgent.
> Staging cup cake raffles or equivalent net requests to raise money for
> the arts as an indicator of our liberation from state or corporate
> funding is not the issue although this might provide some individuals
> with enough financial support to realise their own project. But there
> is a bigger issue: the arts sector is experiencing the real threat of
> diffusion and displacement and here I am not referring to the
> aesthetics of the sublime.
> I welcome your comments,
> -Helene
> http://www.neme.org/
> http://neme-imca.org/
> _______________________________________________
> empyre forum
> empyre at lists.cofa.unsw.edu.au
> http://www.subtle.net/empyre


Renate Ferro
Visiting Assistant Professor of Art
Cornell University
Department of Art, Tjaden Hall Office #420
Ithaca, NY  14853
Email:   <rtf9 at cornell.edu>
URL:  http://www.renateferro.net
Lab:  http://www.tinkerfactory.net

Managing Co-moderator of -empyre- soft skinned space

Art Editor, diacritics

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