[-empyre-] Art, Funding and Politics

Iannis Zannos zannos at gmail.com
Thu Dec 1 09:35:19 EST 2011

Dear Helene and Yiannis,

your "summary review of the project" post is formulated with a sensitivity
and thoughtfulness which touches some deep strings at least for me. I
particularly appreciate your empathy with the "non-western academic"
situation, to which I belong at least partly. I wish to confirm that I felt
exactly that while trying to participate in the discussion. It is difficult
to adapt to the highly specialised tone, it feels like entering a world (to
avoid using the word 'discourse') that one does not entirely belong to. A
lot of translation has to happen behind the stage screen. It is partly
stimulating, partly disorienting. But your post actually reinstates the
meaningfulness and value of the undertaking, by exposing that situation
behind the stage, and thus indirectly affirming that we do have things to
share in these issues.  In my posts I tried to formulate some specific
questions and approaches regarding the issue of funding in the arts, and
found myself painfully slipping into generalities. The sobering effect of
this I regard as already ample reward for the undertaking, if only because
it showed me many of my inadequacies and gave me a first impression of the
technicalities involved. I felt that the financial, political realities
facing artists in Greece, and by extension probably much more in countries
of Africa and Asia (at least) are difficult to express in the more or less
tacitly developed common lingo of postmodern academe. But I do not think
that the cause is lost. On the contrary, I feel this was a good beginning,
even though it may not at present feel so that much. I would say, take a
breath now, but keep in mind that the boomerang will indeed return, and
will need catching and relaunching.

Iannis Zannos

On Wed, Nov 30, 2011 at 8:31 PM, NeMe <nemeorg at gmail.com> wrote:

> Many thanks to Timothy Murray and Renate Ferro who invited us to
> moderate the November discussion on Art, Funding and Politics. It has
> been a very interesting participation for us.
> We also thank our guest discussants, Denise Robinson, Iannis Zannos
> and Bill Balaskas who despite their hectic work schedules, found time
> for substantial contributions and to all of you who contributed to
> this dialogue generating some very pertinent considerations and
> concerns.
> Inviting ideas, comments, and thoughts on a topic such as this,
> generates both objective and subjective responses, so we should be
> prepared for views that differ and challenge for it is this very
> process  that establishes connections to each other in ways that
> generate a coming into alignment with others.
> One positive feature of an online discussion is its immense potential
> to reach a large number of people and not just network friends and
> colleagues. Unfortunately, we feel that this thread has not succeeded,
> to the extent we had hoped for, in engaging a satisfying
> representation of these voices despite the very significant
> contributions.  We also feel that, as moderators, we failed in
> engaging voices belonging to academics and cultural workers from non
> western institutions who do not have English as their first language.
> We did invite several academics from non-western universities who
> enthusiastically agreed to post but then retracted due to their
> unfamiliarity with overtly academic precis style posts. We were aware
> of this criterion when writing our posts however it does appear,
> sadly, that there is still a lot of work to be done towards the
> breaking of the dominant boundaries and notions of intellectual
> authority established by western cultural and academic hegemony,
> especially online.
> In the words of cultural theorist, Nancy Adajania, "its time to
> re-stage the world" and perhaps this is an appropriate conclusion to
> this discussion on art/funding/politics as it is indeed time " to
> re-stage the world " of arts and scholarship into more engaging and
> participatory voices for and from many.
> Thank you for reading,
> Yiannis Colakides and Helene Black
> http://www.neme.org
> http://neme-imca.org
> _______________________________________________
> empyre forum
> empyre at lists.cofa.unsw.edu.au
> http://www.subtle.net/empyre
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