Public art: State funds dedicated to create works for all

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  • MormonDemocrat Salt Lake City, UT
    July 26, 2011 1:11 p.m.

    I find this whole discussion pretty surprising. Every great society that I can think of supported the arts. Much of the great art, music and literature I can think of was supported in some offical way by the government of its day. The arts are among the things that create our culture and make us human. I find it highly discouraging that there is serious resistance to the idea that the state whould support the arts.

  • MuddleVanHeck Farmington, UT
    July 26, 2011 12:53 a.m.

    Are we so behind the curve as to not recognize these mistakes have already played out elsewhere all over the country, and ALWAYS end up with something offensive/pornographic/controversial being shoved down everybody's throat in the name of "art?"

    That said, does the writer of this article have any clue that quoting George Bernard Shaw is extremely offensive to anyone who knows his history, as well as his support of the eugenics movement?


  • Fitz Murray, UT
    July 25, 2011 4:42 p.m.

    I thought the Legislature did away with this program. There is a warehouse full of art, just sitting in storage and not being displayed. So why, when we have so many budget issues, are we continuing this absurd project? It is not that I don't enjoy good art (that is of course in the eye of the beholder), I do enjoy visiting the art museums around the state, and I make it to the Park City Arts Festival every year, I just do not understanding the State paying, in aggregate, millions of dollars every year in art projects when they are closing access to the natural art of the State Parks and cutting government jobs. But then who can ever understand the rational of our beloved Legislature?

  • Happy Valley Heretic Orem, UT
    July 25, 2011 3:52 p.m.

    P said: While I am not against art, but when the State is proposing to shut down or reduce State Parks "because it doesn't make money etc." I would think that we should look at priorities and take care of what we have.

    Don't worry they want to close all the parks too, do away with public art and public education.
    Libraries, a long time equalizer will be the next thing to go, they just let you borrow books,
    for free, how stupid is that? The local Barnes & Noble must have a weak lobbyist.

    "Public" is just another word for "socialism" in their minds.

    America Capitalism is starting to look uglier every day.
    If it can't turn a profit, than it is not worth anything to our new money oriented society.
    Is it any surprise they want the word God on our money.

  • P Central, Utah
    July 25, 2011 3:06 p.m.

    "...He echoes the sentiment of the Newport New Public Art Foundation, which says it well: "The impact of public art on a community is priceless and immeasurable. Public art has the power to energize our public spaces, arouse our thinking, transform the places where we live, work and play into more welcoming and beautiful environments that invite interaction ..."

    While I am not against art, but when the State is proposing to shut down or reduce State Parks "because it doesn't make money etc." I would think that we should look at priorities and take care of what we have.

  • Ultra Bob Cottonwood Heights, UT
    July 25, 2011 11:57 a.m.

    Something I don't understand. How can reasonable people who detest, bemoan, revolt, cry and otherwise object to helping a neighbor by sharing health costs, gladly dump out their pockets to pay for his entertainment.

    The art scam, second only to prostitution, in being the oldest and most profitable venture of man, is simply a way to allow a group of lazy individuals to live without doing any real work. When their target was the lords and ladies of wealth, who wanted some legitimate titillation, I would have no objection. But in today's world the lords and ladies have found ways to make other pay for their vice.

    Despite all the phony promises that the purveyors of art make, none ever get fulfilled. The commercial profit of art is all that one needs to know about in order to understand the priorities of or government.

  • Bruce A. Frank San Jose, CA
    July 25, 2011 11:25 a.m.

    Good grief! Has Utah changed since I lived there! So now instead of talking about providing unfettered opportunity for people, they now speak as if artists just cannot make it without government subsidies. (Many marginally talented ones can't!)

    With the establishment of a government sanctioned "art fund," how long before there is a push by the "artists" and "art lovers," that "This is just sOoo important that we just can't depend on the whims of voluntary donations. We really need legislation passed to provide government funds to assure humanity's essential need and obvious benefit from art is always maintained! And, survival of fledgling artists."

    Therefore ushering in a permanent "artisan class" who cannot make it without government subsidies! Don't doubt me! The cry will come one day, sooner than you think,"Yes, the state is dramatically over budget, but we will take the state to court if you try to cut the 'Art Fund'!"

  • DN Subscriber Cottonwood Heights, UT
    July 25, 2011 10:25 a.m.

    Art is great!

    I applaud artists and people who buy art.

    But, providing art for the public is not a government job, or a taxpayer responsibility.

    Get the legislature to authorize an "art fund" with all funding to come from voluntary donations. All the art lovers are welcome to write as large a check as they want to and help provide art for the public. Those who do not want to fund it do not have to.

    Make sure the list of donors is public record, and we can compare the names of those who want public art with those willing to put their own money into the project. And, let those who contribute help choose the "art" to be purchased!

  • Walt Nicholes Orem, UT
    July 25, 2011 8:46 a.m.

    I think that taxing the people -even a teeny little bit - so that the government can coddle a handful of activist liberals is just plain wrong.

    Art is wonderful, but if it can't pay for itself it should go hungry.

    Let artists create as much as they want. Let them sell their wares in the public square. Let the public decide what, if any, they will buy.

    There is no justification in my mind for funding public art.

    Next thing you know someone will want to fund public literature, and then public music and so forth.

    And to be comprehensive, there is also no justification to fund public science - especially when scientists are permitted to develop at public expense, and then patent for private benefit. The old idea that what is developed with public money is public domain seems to have flown the coop.

  • justamacguy Manti, UT
    July 25, 2011 8:39 a.m.

    Use the money for something really useful... like food.

  • Bruce Edward Walker Midland, MI
    July 25, 2011 7:51 a.m.

    Much of this commentary is a full of logical fallacies. Yes, we know what art can do, but simply because public art was prominent in Greece thousands of years ago doesn't necessarily mean it has a place in modern society whether there exists money in the budget to pay for it or not. What the essay establishes is a false choice between whether art can exist or not without government subsidies. Of course, we know it can, has, and will continue to do so. The urge to create will result in art regardless taxpayer expenditures.