September 7, 2005

Art and Urbanism

I came across this tidbit via artsjournal.com:

Given that struggle to survive, surely Sydney's art scene is likely to be hardest hit.

For a start, it is an outrageously expensive city. "In dollar terms, Sydney is still way, way more expensive than anywhere else in Australia," the Reserve Bank governor, Ian Macfarlane, told a parliamentary committee last month. "I think it's so expensive that, particularly for a lot of young people, it's in their interests to go elsewhere, where the lifestyle is more affordable."


The article is interesting but a bit twisted. But I have no time to Fisk it.

I should note that I think that artists need cheap rent to have the time to think about art, to make art, to incubate so that art has intrinsic reasons for being. Art and business are two separate worlds. More than a tool of gentrification- the prescence of artists in a city is a sure sign of grass roots urban renewal -at any rate. Worlds separate but symbiotic perhaps.

Too bad that we get edged out eventually.
Too bad that cities don't try to conserve this vital resource... although I'm not sure what can sensibly be done.

Paris at the turn of the century. Post war New York. Post New York Los Angeles. Now, (post Cold War) Berlin. Are there any other major metropoli left in the world as a site where artists can incubate? Is it unreasonable to anticipate the day when Berlin becomes too expensive for artsts too? Perhaps then our connectedness (DSL plus affordable airfare) will help. Mexico City? Athens? Buenos Aires?

Posted by Dennis at September 7, 2005 8:21 AM

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