Month: February 2014

Streetwise in Seville

There was a spontaneous peal of applause in the Teatro Central at the end of this film yesterday, where I showed it during a talk about community arts at a performing arts and social inclusion conference in Seville. The Answer to Everything is… Read More

Artists did this

At Seville Cathedral today,  my breath was taken away by the power of a building designed, made and decorated by artists. I walked around just gaping at the unfathomable display of craft, inventiveness and beauty. In the past, when church and king… Read More

Why I don’t tweet

It was my younger son, who’s a digital native, who persuaded me it was a bad idea. I’d been watching Twitter for a while, slightly mesmerised by its speed, energy and violence. When I gave a talk at the Bush last year,… Read More

It’s the end of the world as we know it

There’s been a lot of talk in recent years about the arts (and culture) being in crisis. There will be much more, next week, when delegates gather for a big double conference in York and Bristol, generously funded by the British Council,… Read More

Whose will? Whose Triumph?

State funding of culture is a very tricky thing to do in a democracy. Patrons, sponsors, customers  just buy what they want. But in the post-war European welfare state, managers in state departments or arm’s length bodies were tasked – for the first… Read More

Beyond control

 I want the heart, I want the soul, I want control right now Badlands (1978) Bruce Springsteen ‘Shackled and Drawn’ During the 1970s, when the NME was teaching me how to listen to music (and more besides) and punk challenged the Seventies rock… Read More