Monday, July 24, 2006

Portland residents: Get your $5 back

By the numbers Oregon ranks 47th in the nation for public state funding of the arts, investing only 16 cents a person.
Local public funding for the arts and culture is considerably higher within the Portland tri-county metropolitan area, breaking down to about $2.84 a person.

The city of Portland spends nearly $5 a person on arts and culture. That is about average among U.S. cities, but low for the West Coast.

28 days of gray, 2001
temporary RACC In Situ installation
Tom McCall Waterfront Park, Portland, OR

I know what you are thinking: first, where can I get my five dollars back; and second, it's a good thing that scrap metal "art" was done in 2001 because today the meth addicts would have stolen it for drug money; and last, can I somehow have my $5 go towards opening the Wapato jail instead of artwork?

And since we are in an election cycle I think that it's prudent to metion how our current [failure of a] governor feels about metal plates and poles sticking out of the ground at Waterfront Park:

We were the first state to finance public art for every public building.
-April 4, 2003

“This has been a very important and successful year for art and culture in Oregon. In spite of a very tight budget, we were able to preserve the state’s two leading public voices for art and culture - the Oregon Arts Commission and the Oregon Cultural Trust.
-December 23, 2003

I'm hoping that my $2.84 went to this great sculpture...


MAX Redline said...

Oddly, there's over half a million dollars' worth of "art" at Wapato Jail. Nobody's ever seen it, because the jail's never been opened. But it's kind of comforting, don't you think, just to know it's there. At least we know it's in a safe location.

dchamil said...

Once public art was decorative details incorporated in the building itself, in a way pleasing to the average person. Nowadays, the public building is a featureless box with an adjoining plaza containing an incomprehensible abstract sculpture. This "art object" pleases the arty critics and is baffling to the general public, which pays the bill. It's also wasteful of expensive urban real estate -- look at the Salem Civic center with its Peace Plaza, for example. I'm reminded of the conservative's slogan Many changes, few improvements.

Anonymous said...

#5 on the list of...You must be a Liberal if...Art wouldn't exist without government funding.

BEAR said...

#10,'re a liberal know the artist. #10,'re a liberal demand that art be prominently displayed on the sides of new aircraft carriers,...and only if the art takes the place of the aircraft.

Ric said...

"Conservative legislators in Ottawa, as has happened in similar cases, became enraged in June after learning that the Canada Council for the Arts had given $9,000 (Cdn) to performance artist Jess Dobkin to stage Lactation Station, a bar serving human breast milk from six contributors in a setting similar to a wine-tasting. [Canadian Press, 6-16-06]"

Via News of the Weird
No direct url available, but it was the current when I posted this.

This is an example of the kind of art that we would fund ...

While I believe in censorship. Parents must censor what thier children see. I don't believe the Government should be doing that. And, by funding crappy art but not good art ( my scale !) they are in essence censoring good art.

I like art, I simply cannot see spending any public money on it ... want to privatly buy some and post in a public space, be my guest!

R Huse said...

Seems to me this firmly establishes the idea that the arts have no need whatsoever of public funding. Oregon ranks 47th? Does anyone really feel that there are no artists in this state? Since we are pretty much at the bottom of public funding one would think there would be no artists, yet I cant seem to swing a dead cat without hitting one. Makes one wonder a little don't it? Hmmmmm.

BEAR said...

lol, r huse, are you curious about the artiste's, or the swinging of dead cats as an art form?

R Huse said...

Nah - Im not curious about either really, although I have actually had a dead cat purposefully swung at me. Not only that, I was hit with it. Ahh, the perils of high school biology.

Who are these "artists" and why is it beneath them to make works that people will actually buy of their own free will? Andre Serrano wakes up, says he's an artist, sticks a bullwhip up a guys ass and gets fifteen grand from the NEA because no one will buy it, he's an artist. R. Huse wakes up, takes a picture of a woman holding a bullwhip and can actually sell not only the picture but the bullwhip as well and somehow that's not pure art. What a crock. Geee, can you tell I have a chip on my shoulder about "artists" who cant sell their crap? Screw you vest wearing sensitive art guy. Know why you cant sell art like me? Because you fried your brain smoking too much pot and now you cant write code and program a web site like I can. Got it? Put the pipe down, get off your slack ass and sell your god damn art. Don't force me, and I am MR. ART, to buy it. Man am I pissed off.

PS - Oregon's Poet Laureate gets a $20,000 grant. Ted just awarded that money a few months back. You know what the Laureate has to do for that? Give six one hour talks in the course of a year. You do the math.

If you create it and cant sell it, you may still be an artist, and it may still be art, but you are also a bought and paid for welfare whore.

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