Tuesday, May 16, 2006

Getting more out of ARTWORKS

The comments section on the "Souvenir" posts points to my failure to explain something.

The New Variety programs of the late 1980s were not organized or blessed by ARTWORKS - we, the community, enjoyed the hospitality of ARTWORKS for an evening. These were not "successful programs" bureacratically developed for someone's edification. They were expressions of a "successful community" in a local space supplied by the city administered by ARTWORKS' board.

The same is true for shows like the more recent "We Are Toys" production that Tricia mentioned.

Much ARTWORKS criticism fails to see that this facility is a community resource. Need a class? Teach a class! Need music? Put on music! Need a dinner event venue? You get the idea.

I have had to laugh at some of the interaction between the city and the space. Very formal, very unreal: "Please put on more art programs for city children." Clue: These will come from groups organizing themselves using the ARTWORKS space, not from the board of directors. Groups will approach the board - the board may or may not approve - but this is basically people power.

The consumer society tries on people power: not a pretty sight. The plaint becomes, "Board of directors, what have you done for me lately?" "Give me more programs."

Do for yourself. That's the beauty of this special site.

(Top right, reprised photo of ARTWORKS via an Utrecht arts supply catalog)


Anonymous J.E. said...

We've moved into "If a tree falls" territory here. By your logic, if no groups apply to use Artworks for arts space, doesn't that lack of demand prove that this is not the best use of the land?

Maybe what you're inadvertently pointing out is that there are cultural uses besides erudite art/performance space that would better serve this community.

9:36 AM  
Blogger Dimitri Rotov said...

The space - as ARTWORKS - is ultimately at the disposal of the community as long as it is out of the hands of developers.

10:02 AM  

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