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September 24, 2008

Arts Funding Cuts Meeting -- Peterborough

Img_6721_2 Get a group of artists together to discuss a plan of action to deal with arts funding cuts and you end up with a room full of energy, ideas, enthusiasm, and people ready to go all out for the cause.

I don't want to reveal any secrets that shouldn't be let out too soon, but I'd just like to reassure those people of Peterborough who care passionately about arts and culture in its many varied forms that a team of like-minded citizens -- artists, art-patrons, and arts organization volunteers -- are getting ready to respond to the Harper government funding cuts in a powerful, uniquely Peterborough way.

Watch the Peterborough Arts Umbrella website for updates in the days ahead. This is a campaign that's going to be hitting the streets in a major way.

An interesting footnote to the evening: A representative from Dean Del Mastro's campaign team and a man with a tape recorder who arrived midway through the evening * -- sat in on the meeting. There were members of other political party campaign teams in the room as well. But given that the meeting was called to "criticize, challenge, and creatively pressure the government" to change its mind about its arts funding cuts, it didn't seem appropriate to have members of the local Conservative campaign team sitting in the room while the group got into the nitty-gritty of plotting its strategy for a campaign directed against the Harper arts funding cuts. A decision was made to ask all members of all campaign teams to leave the room at this point. The meeting wrapped up a short time later.

* The fellow with the tape recorder arrived midway through the meeting and started taping the meeting. When people asked who he was, Mike Lynch said he was a blogger and/or affiliated with a radio station (perhaps online -- I didn't catch all the details). The man with the tape recorder left when members of all campaign teams were asked to leave.

About the photo:
Iga Janik, Director of ARTSPACE, takes notes during the meeting.


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I was so hoping to attend this and ended up coming down with a fun cold thingy - didn't think it fair to come in and be all contagious at people. This is a good time to ramp up on these kinds of talks and plans with arts week just around the corner (tomorrow!) and heading into the busy season for crafters. I can't wait to see what comes of this!

Can hardly wait to see how this campaign will hit the streets of Peterborough ! Harper and Del Mastro have been nothing more than arrogant in their comments towards the art and culture communities in the last few days !!!!!

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