Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Art Matters: Who Knew?

As you know, reader, I'm mighty out of the loop sometimes. So it was this week when I read about Art Matters, a conference winding up Calgary's venerable High Performance Rodeo festival. The Calgary Herald has a report on the event, which sought to address the use of arts in social change.

But, but, but... that's not all. Not only was it a surprise to hear about the conference; it was a surprise to find out that Art Matters is also part of Governor General Michaƫlle Jean's wider project Citizen Voices: Breaking Down Solitudes, which lists "Art Matters" and "Urban Arts" as two of its themes of interest.

As Jean said at the Art Matters conference,

"Art has the power to inspire, to heal, to transform, to rehabilitate, to bear witness and to make us believe there are better days ahead."

Such a different perspective from that of Stephen Harper, who has been quite silent on the arts issue since his much-blogged Beatles performance last year. (Oh, unless chopping funding to small arts mags -- some of those "citizen voices" -- makes a noise. Maybe someone should write a pop song for that?)

Image of Jean from the Calgary Herald


planforamiracle said...

Thank you for this post, especially for drawing attention to the Globe article about magazine cuts. Appalling!

Leah Sandals said...

Yeah, it's pretty sad. I can see wanting to "encourage" small mags to boost their circulation, but fact is even "successful" book runs in Canada land in the 2,000 to 5,000 range... let alone magazines. Not a good thing.