It really isn’t a surprise that the arts have been hurt by the current economy. Considering people are losing homes, losing jobs, trying to eat, and simply survive, the arts reside on the bottom of the “priorities” list. Yesterday I found the following video.
After doing a bit more research, more gloom and doom with the announcement from Brandeis University:
Brandeis University trustees voted unanimously yesterday to close the Rose Art Museum by late summer and sell its international collection to survive the troubled economy. […] The Rose Art Museum owns a wide variety of modern and contemporary art including pieces by Picasso, Andy Warhol, Willem de Kooning, Jasper Johns and Roy Lichtenstein. (Source)
umm…if only I had some extra cash flow, like a few million, for the Picasso.
Now here is the interesting twist. NPR reports the following:
The authors of the current stimulus package seem to think so – they have included $50 million for the National Endowment for the Arts and $150 million for infrastructure repairs at the Smithsonian.
…and so the debate begins. Does the arts community deserve a stimulus bolt just like the rest of corporate America? Arguably, yes. If the auto industry can be “saved” using our almighty dollar, then so should America’s cultural heritage. Do I need to add the ridiculous bank bailout into the mix?
Although some will disagree and believe the arts shouldn’t be funded, I don’t mind chipping in to support the arts. After all, shouldn’t all industries, including the arts, deserve a piece of the economic stimulus pie?