Tag: leadership

In search of gravitas

Gravitas, the heavy tread of moral earnestness, becomes a bore if it is not accompanied by the light step of intelligence.   (Kenneth Clark, Civilisation, Ch. 4) In 1969, the same year that a NASA programme named after a Classical Greek god put… Read More

Naked emperors

‘I want to change, but not if it means changing,’ a patient once said to me in complete innocence. This insight from psychoanalyst Stephen Grosz came to mind as I listened to some of the discussion at and around the latest ‘State… 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

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


Volunteers and candlelight ‘Above all there are more men,’ says Roberta Megias Alcalde, a librarian working in a village near Granada, La Zubia. ‘Whereas before you’d mainly have housewives coming in for novels, now there’s a lot more unemployment and everybody in… Read More

Old maps and new projections

In Flanders (Belgium) there has been much recent debate about cultural governance. The central issues are about the best models for distribution of public funds but, of course, the discussion occurs against background of pressure on public spending. Earlier this year, I… Read More

An even break for young artists

Three months ago, I agreed to make a ‘digital postcard’ for the engage conference, which takes place in Cardiff today and tomorrow. It was a mistake: saying something useful (or even engaging) in three minutes to camera is not a skill I… Read More

Those who get it, and those who don’t

As the crisis sapping the Western economies continues, the division between those who get it and those who don’t becomes wider and more important. Unfortunately, those who don’t get it are mostly those who are in charge­—of governments, banks, corporations, and the… Read More

Theatre as solidarity

We ask no money for our performances. We ask for the public to contribute with food products with extended shelf life to be offered to Houses which take care of our fellow men.’ Sotiris Hatzakis, 28 February 2012 This Spring, actors of… Read More

The art of uncertainty

The effects of the 2008 banking crash continue to spiral, despite the initial confidence of politicians and business people that they’d soon get things back on track. Yesterday France and Austria lost their AAA rating from the same agencies that were convinced,… Read More