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Issue #1775      May 3, 2017

Arts under Socialism

Last Thursday April 20, the CPA Politics in the Pub Perth presented Arts Under Socialism featuring Pilar Kasat, Olga Cironis and Christopher Crouch. All three speakers are involved in community arts and believe it is not adequately recognised in capitalist Australia. All had some knowledge and experience of arts in a socialist system from having attended primary school in a socialist state to engaging with artists from socialist countries such as Cuba.

The panel of speakers.

They strongly advocated for more funding for community art as a way of enriching the society and creating a dynamic where art expresses the material basis of society but creates a dynamic loop whereby the conditions are also influenced and changed by art.

Pilar gave a moving example of a community arts project in an Indigenous community that was having major problems with suicide and the very positive outcomes that had arisen for the whole community. These projects often happen in isolation without connectivity to other communities. Luckily in the example shared the works created in the project became an exhibit in a major gallery in Sydney.

The current state of art in Australia is often out of reach for many. The issue of alienation was given much importance in the presentations. After the speakers presented their views there was an interesting and lively Q&A that gave them the opportunity to expand on the themes presented. Crouch spoke on the CPA draft policy on Arts, which was well received by the close to 50 people in attendance. Lorena Trigo skilfully chaired the meeting.

Next article – Anger at Turnbull’s title “settled” claim

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