|The Artists Prozac - staying positive in light of the funding crisis.|
|Written by Kaare Long|
|Friday, 09 September 2011 11:17|
As a business consultant to the Arts in BC, I've been finding more and more that my job entails a good deal of time working on some pretty negative feelings from artists and translating them to positive, motivating goals for the future. Why is this happening?
Well, the 'why' is pretty simple to explain. It is the 'How to fix it?' issue that is a little more complex, but with the right mind set, possible to overcome.
The Provincial arts and culture budget was slashed from 19.5 million in 2008/09 to 3.6 million in 2009/10 and then to 2.2 million in 2010/11. Arts organizations who previously had enjoyed pretty consistent funding from the government to do their Art and educate within the community now had to do the same amount of work, for more than a 60% cut in revenue per year. This drastic cut of support sent artists reeling, closed down some organizations, and severely limited the day to day operations of others. It is no doubt that the people and artists behind these organizations have begun to feel bitter, negative and essentially depressed.
A support that was there, was pulled, suddenly. Artists have had to go through a period of shock, denial, anger, acceptance - pretty much the stages of grief. This move from the government was a blow to the self esteem of any artist working in BC - working to make a difference - and then being pretty much told that what they do really does not matter enough to put support behind it. Yes, negative feelings seem natural in this circumstance.
But - if we follow that model, getting ourselves out of that low self esteem, working through the grief and withdrawal and gradually getting to the acceptance stage, we now have a blank slate to re-write our futures, and create a new strategy for our approach.
What does acceptance and moving forward look like? - Realizing that it is what it is, that what was a funding crisis is now a reality, and in order to succeed the drive must be towards 'what do we do now?' rather than 'poor us we are so sad and mad'.
And what do we do to stay positive and keep moving?
Yes it all sucks - but lets prove our worth by being strong, focused and even more dedicated to our work than before because we believe in what we do. The time for complaining is over, and the time to rise up in the face of adversity is now.
|Last Updated on Saturday, 24 September 2011 18:15|
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