I need some inconsistency

An amalgamation of content: the aim not to politicise, but exercise. I'll think aloud about politics, technology, current news, as well as being a gay boy and what that really entails.

Tuesday, October 26, 2004

Artists Donating Art

"Some of Britain's best known contemporary artists have given or have promised major works to the Tate Gallery, to plug the gaping holes in the collections caused by years of standstill in government funding.

Damien Hirst, David Hockney, Sir Lucian Freud, and Gilbert and George are among those who have promised art, while Antony Gormley and Anthony Caro have already given major works."

"The Tate is also launching a fund raising drive to build up a purchase fund of £50m to £100m, of which only the interest would be spent on buying art, unless something extraordinary came on the market.

Sir Nicholas said that given the cuts or at best freezing of its government funds, year after year, and the staggering inflation in art prices, the gallery's buying power was now about 5% of what it had been 20 years ago."

I think this is fantastic. Most importantly is the involvement of Paula Rego who is by far the most interesting and arresting of the artists here. I find Hockney and Hirst slightly sideways in the way their art comes across whislt Rego's work though not straightforward in any way, is beautifully executed and composed. I can't wait to see what she's given.

It's interesting of course, that a major art museum like the Tate is forced to stoop to the level of appealing to the artists themselves for donations. Of course these same artists will be more keen to aid the Tate than perhaps the MoMa, because the Tate has consistently supported struggling, growing artists. But what is it about the UK art market that means that the museums themselves cannot afford to purchase their own art, cannot compete on the the open market?

Guardian story


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