Do not enter the Netherlands, cultural meltdown in progress
There is a mysterious ad in today’s New York Times: “Do not enter the Netherlands, cultural meltdown in progress.
This advertisement was placed by Dutch Artists 2011. A collective of hundreds of artists, organizers, and sympathizers, who stand united to preserve and protect the international value and importance of the Dutch Arts.
They want it to wake up the world and draw attention to the Dutch Government’s horrendous cutbacks in the Arts sector. People need to be made aware of the far-reaching negative consequences that this will have on the international art sector, tourism, corporate life and the domestic economy.
Support for museums, film, music, performing arts and visual arts will be reduced by more than 50%.
The Netherlands credits its exceptional international reputation for a major part due to the innovative and daring work from independent artists in the small and middle-sized art institutions. It is exactly these artists and institutions who will be hit hardest by the drastic cuts. The government is throwing its internationally-admired support function for the most part overboard. The installed subsidy structure was the result of decennia-long investment and development. Now that the current cabinet is demolishing this structure, The Netherlands is losing her cultural diversity, independence and depth.
Many orchestras, theatre groups, dance companies, art institutions and festivals are doomed to disappear. Young artists will be forced to stand on the sidelines. A limited number of large institutions will continue to exist but as new talent no longer has a chance to develop, they too will be unable to guarantee quality and renewal. They will find themselves stranded in the same cultural desert.
Dutch Artists 2011 calls upon everyone, to stand together with us, in order to underline the importance of Dutch art and culture and to call upon the Dutch cabinet to put a stop to its destructive policy. We ask you to send your proof of support (before Monday June 27) to firstname.lastname@example.org in your language of choice! Your support will be made known to the Dutch government.
Source: Dutch Artists 2011
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