by DAVE WILLIAMS
I recently, lately, remembered, discovered that writing is creativity. I also discovered, on a profoundly personal level that once you are creating, all is well in the cosmic scheme of things. It may not be the pretty tropical picture we would rather paint, but it will be an amazing picture. In other words, creativity, like democracy don't need good parents. In fact, the worst the parents get, the more potent the offspring - the arts, sciences... the muscles of humanity - seem to become. Interestingly, I think that art and crime have the same parents - the same social imbalance and pressure that causes the one causes the other. Art, like democracy and like crime only grow, strong, healthy and win friends and influence people when nourished by x-amount ah shit. Pressure. But why is it that only crime is doing so much better than his brother? All the success, fame, notoriety, engagement, preoccupation and transformation? Artist need to engage the rogue voice, the dissenting counter to our slip-sliding civilisation. Why are only the criminals and politicians becoming brave while our canvases, stages and voices go blank with status quotes. Bitter or better
So, the National Museum is having a big show with about 30 artist from all around the world including 8 from T&T. Check this link athttp://artzpub.blogspot.com/2010/12/we-artists-exhibition-bringing-together.html. Or your daily newspapers. This is odd. Is this funded by our Gov't/us? If the answer is yes, it would be truly entertaining. The show states as its major objective "a desire for local artists to make connections and get their work out to the larger world as well as to bring foreign artists to Trinidad to enjoy and be inspired by our rich culture."Out of the 30 odd artist only 8 odd are from here. Yet another case of foreign content outstripping local content, reminiscent of so much we. Are we/Gov't again supporting local by promoting foreign. What... local not good enough to stand on its on merit. Where the island arrogance, our independence, the boundless faith in our destiny? Nothing is wrong with supporting or repatriating foreign trinis, like the curator of the show or Nicky Minaj or anyone who has "made it out there", It could counter the brain drain that has been jamming us for over 3 decades. But how can Gov't/we be supporting/funding repatriation and foreign consultancies and at the same time be dragging the stage right from under our feet, squeezing out the people who live and practice there art here. I hear even Machel might be taking up residence outside. (p'se confirm). Has our Gov't/we ever supported a local artist/s' concert, outside of Devine Echoes, with an injection of anything like Minaj-esque $826,000 or even the $300,000+ that she herself was paid. And what is this museum show costing us. Especially since they done ahready have no money to pay panmen the measly $1,000. Why is local support always commensurate and proportional to foreign-ness. Is our Gov't saying “Buy local… but from abroad”. Where's Andre Bagoo? And what are the policies, criteria, channels, processes for getting a booking at the bloomin museum anyway... or at the NAPA, or Queen's Hall, or the Bowl, the Stadium or any artspace funded by us/Gov't for that matter? Why does none of us know? They/Gov't only always gets to do what they want to do or are inclined to support, and/or supports who is inclined to support them. Furthermore and tobesides, if an event is Govt/we-funded, shouldn't there be a transparent selection process that ‘s made clear to the public, whatever that process is – ent is our money!? Why is it not being spent on us.
You can't have multi-culturalism when politics and politicians are battening down and sinking their boney, self-feeding, pre-lubed fingers into every arts crack and then swallowing the keys.
Has “Culture” like “Youth” become synonymous with Governments and political inclinations? Art is usually a tight and uncomfortable fit for the fingers of politics - a force fit - a false fit. The thing about politicians is that once they have their whole hand up yuh ass, you can only say what they ventriloquise. And taking the metaphor miserably further: the discomfort and Y'nin to d side soon stops and you soon forget there's a fist up your ass, and they just keep shoving bigger and bigger ones up in there But the coupling is never pretty nor real and they soon move onto the next ass. Can we let these fellahs walk through yuh ass and fist and cuff the democracy and/of creativity from yuh belly? But like it or not, democracy and creativity are built to take licks even if we not. When artists become the playthings, tools and mouth organs of un-greased politicians, know that democracy and creativity have taken their exit. Both are like black widows, they will bite the head off the same fellah who just force-breed them. The babies come anyway - fatherless forces of nature made to be reckoned with.