Posts Tagged ‘Crawford Art Gallery’

Art: The Greatest Hits

11 July 2009

By Kevin O’Sullivan

Stephen Forbes - HeadsThe story in today’s Irish Times that the Department of Arts, Sport and Tourism has asked the authorities of the National GalleryIMMA, and the Crawford Gallery to step up their pursuit of commercial opportunities and partnerships to fund their activities, and to adopt ‘more populist’ exhibition policies raises an age old question: should we give the people what they want (or what they think they want) or should the role of our cultural institutions be to challenge and open the minds of the population to a new cultural experience?

We can, I think, largely discard the idea that commercial partnerships are detrimental to the arts, certainly not when they are viewed as Peter Murray, director of the Crawford, sees them: as an opportunity to open ‘innovative thinking in terms of commercial initiatives’. Commercial funding of the arts is nothing new and has helped to bring together some of the best exhibitions in the world in recent years. Case in point: the brilliant and massively successful ‘Picasso et les Maîtres’ I attended at the Grand Palais in Paris earlier this year, sponsored by Möet and Louis Vuitton among others. As long as commercial sponsorship is used to develop and open doors for those who work curating the galleries, I can’t see anything wrong with it in the slightest. Read More