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Culturelink review, no.30/April 2000 - contents - imprint - archive

L'art et la société
Nouvelles technologies, financement et éducation artistique: question d'actualité

Art and Society
Topical Questions: The 'New Technologies' Funding and Artistic Education

Paris, UNESCO Publishing, 1999, 239 pp.

This publication, dedicated to the memory of Lord Yehudi Menuhin, represents a collection of articles prepared for the World Congress on the Status of the Artist, held in Paris in June 1997 and organized by UNESCO, the French Ministry of Culture and Communication, and the Getty Conservation Institute.

Over thirty authors - artists, writers, poets and musicians, theoreticians, critics, educators, mediators, founders of foundations, cultural activists and businessmen - give their opinions and views, question issues and offer answers with enthusiasm, skepsis or deep conviction. Indeed, countless are the issues and difficulties, misconceptions and illusions, initiatives and endeavours, impulses and discouragements that artists meet in today's world so burdened with challenges and relentless limitations. On the threshold of the new millennium, this publication gauges the new relationships forming between artists and the community in which they live and the stakes involved in the technological revolution and in the creation and communication of cultural values. Researchers and renowned artists from different geocultural backgrounds talk of their singular practices in an evolving world in which almost everything has changed - the public, the tools of creation, the artistic and creative approach, and the means of financing the arts.

The five chapters of this book about art and society offer an authoritative overview of the current world situation reflected in a wide range of conditions, needs and possibilities - from elementary human survival to civilizational vision. The world does not recognize itself well enough, and the little it does see is a distorted image. As insufficient as it may be, UNESCO's persistent and systematic effort to contribute to the recognition of life's real framework is reconfirmed with this publication.