Tim Blair brings terrifying news from the world of Australian taxpayer-funded art:
Readers may recall the brutal warning handed down last month by journalist and tax-funded art enthusiast Ben Eltham. “The arts are a powerful latent force in Australia’s political landscape,” Eltham wrote following Arts Minister George Brandis’s rearrangement of arts funding. “George Brandis and his colleagues would be wise to reflect on this, and whether they can win a war of symbols against some of the most creative and energetic people in our society.”
We Brits have of course endured the full brunt of such a clash. The references to Derrida were particularly distressing.
There are, however, signs of low morale among the art world’s would-be storm troopers:
“Maybe the best option really is to get out of the country,” Hobart-based sculptural artist Theia Connell told Vice magazine last week. That’s Connell’s response to news that previous Arts Start grants for emerging artists have been cut. “The likelihood is that I’ll find myself in a day job,” complained Sydney’s Luke Devine.
Ah, yes. Plan B.
Incidentally, Ms Theia Connell, the artist threatening to leave Australia, tells us that she “interrogates the divisions within social space itself.” As I’m sure will be obvious from a glance at her creations, staggering as they are. While Luke Devine, the artist dismayed by the prospect of getting a job and paying his own bills, prefers to expand our minds via the cruelly neglected medium of interpretive dance. These, then, are the artists chosen by Vice magazine as exemplars of struggling young talent. Presumably, their works are supposed to persuade readers that the cutting of taxpayer subsidy to such people endangers the very turning of the world.
The daring transgressions and cash-pocketing powers of Australia’s taxpayer-funded artists have been touched on previously. See the last item here. Particular attention should be paid to the Styrofoam stylings of Dale Gorfinkel.
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