Tuesday, May 1, 2007

Wide Ranging Discussion: Arts and Society

Last week's attendees at the Friday Morning Group engaged in a wide ranging discussion of the Arts and their impact on society (and vice versa). Topics covered included African American Heritage and diversity and tolerance in media in the now post Imus age.

We discussed Bob Devin Jones' opening performance in Permanent Collection at the studio@620 (http://www.thestudioat620.com/p_tpir07.htm):
Permanent Collection is a searing examination of racial politics that ultimately ask how much space – literally and figuratively – the white world gives to African-Americans. What is the cost of failing to view the world through another’s eyes?

Those who have seen it gave rave reviews and highly recommended that the rest of us go see the play.

Herb Snitzer gave us an update on his activity for the week - a table at the African American Heritage gathering at the Hilton. There he met the lovely director of an African American museum in Jacksonville. They are going to be working on a possible showing of Herb's work and tying it into the Civil Rights movement. That developed into an interesting discussion on the diversity of cultural offerings in Jacksonville - museums, galleries, restaurants and art exhibits. Jacksonville has a rich cultural background, fueled in part by its traditional role as the financial capitol of the state.

There was also a discussion of the City's situation with the Public Arts program given the current tax "reform" climate. Arts are way down the list of people's thoughts, particularly those 1 1/2 paychecks away from being homeless. There was also a comment that art is messy - it causes creative thinking. We generally agreed that the arts potential for this community is great, but that perhaps the governance isn't there for it - yet. Anyone interested in a discussion of the value of art education can find it here.

So, that's a brief rundown of what you missed last Friday. Why not stop by this week and experience it firsthand?

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