Art and money

For a moment MPRNewsQ’s business and arts & culture collections both share a crossover feature front and center, The economy through the lens of British TV ads:

Peter Bigg runs the British Television Advertising Awards and he’ll introduce the program Friday night at the Walker. He said it’s been a tough year in Britain, as is plain to see when you switch on the telly.

This set me digging into the art, business, and the business of art pieces I’ve seen recently.


MinnEcon shares the example of a “loyalty bonus” for toughing out the recession at a performing arts center:

Like many organizations, the Myles Reif Performing Arts Center in Grand Rapids took a hit in the recession. So as the financial picture started to ease recently, leaders wanted to recognize those who kept the place going in the hardest times.

The result: six workers will receive up to $400 in what David Marty, President of Reif Arts Council described as a “loyalty bonus.”

Granted, any industry may consider a loyalty bonus, but I’m not sure bonuses are a regular occurrence in the art field.


From the Today’s Question archive:Does the price of a ticket keep you from attending classical music concerts? An excerpt from one reply points to the different costs for different performances:

“How come the issue of price always comes up as an issue in the arts (museums, classical music, etc.) but never when it comes to rock concerts, sporting events, video games etc?

Hearing and seeing the greatest works created by man is still the best bargain in town. It costs much more to watch Amy Winehouse throw up on stage, or buy a gaming console that lets you carjack or blow up aliens, or see over-the-hill boomer rockers strut around on stage like they’re still rebellious 20-year-olds instead of billionaires with prostate issues.”
Posted by John

Are the other event costs sustainable? How is attendance at Timberwolves’ games?


Finally, on State of the Arts Marianne Combs wrote about giving to the arts when people are hurt or hungry. One reply:

The arts are not a basic need for any one individual to live. But as a community, if the Twin Cities wish to retain their population of professionals, scientists, leaders,… the arts are mandatory.

The dollars spent to retain this crucial echelon of the economy have a multiplier effect, benefiting those in need more so than direct contributions. If all of the arts lovers left town we would lose the engines of our economy, and our tax base would be annihilated; leaving those in need with neither public nor private support. – Posted by Craig

Discussing the tension between quality-of-life and basic living needs isn’t new, but this perspective might be.