If anyone ever had any doubts about the monetary value of art a press release from The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York today reports how three of their spring/summer exhibitions this year Impressionism, Fashion, and Modernity; Punk: Chaos to Couture; and The Roof Garden Commission: Imran Qureshi generated an estimated $742 million of spending by regional, national and international visitors to New York.
The intrinsic benefits and artistic excellence of ‘art’ is also often very hard to prove to either the public, or to the number crunchers measuring results in monetary terms. However from statistics relating to entrance fees they can ascertain the extent of a growth of knowledge. From goods purchased at purpose built shops statisticians can ascertain how much product provides the profits after all expenses, to significantly contribute to economic growth.
Helping to shape savvy citizens for our ever-evolving society is the business of the arts and culture sector around the world and The Met is providing one great role model. Many arts institutions and groups around the world are leading the way, producing outstanding exhibitions, boosting public imagination, sparking inquiry and inspiring innovation while contributing to important cultural conversations that will continue long after the event has ended. They are doing well because they are placing an emphasis on public participation.
Developing a relationship with the imagery of the world in which we live is part of a life long learning process for us all. Everything we do is much more effective, and fun in terms of real outcomes if people also take part. So don’t let’s just look at a Claude Monet, let’s learn how to paint like Claude Monet. Don’t let us just listen to the music, let’s draw to the music as well.