Direct or representative democracy?

A work in progress.

Thanks to Milton Freedman, we now live in a world of rampant individualists. Value has triumphed over values. That is, personal gain literally Trumps ethics – as we have seen in the US.

If we in the UK learned anything from the Brexit referendum, it was that representative democracy no longer cuts the mustard; so remote as to become distrustful.

Everyone now wants to see their own vote count, with direct impact. A hundred per cent. But we’re learning that that only happens if my will prevails. So the next phase is going to be (has started already): autocracy. Majorities? Ha. If you don’t agree with me, you don’t/won’t count. I’m going to have my way regardless.

FFS. We are a social ape. This is going to cause havoc with our mental health, collaboration is going to be a nightmare, the collective is well and truly dead.

Or is it?

Cultural Diplomacy or Creative Enterprise: a Definition of Terms

For the past few years I have been privileged to be invited each July to give a lecture on this topic to the MA students in arts administration at Boston University as part of their London Summer School. There is a lot of sloppy definition about around these four terms and I have used these annual sorties to gradually hone my ideas. This presentation dates from July 2016. Continue reading “Cultural Diplomacy or Creative Enterprise: a Definition of Terms”

Creativity and Leadership

This participatory article is from a presentation I was asked to make as agent provocateur at Factorial in October 2014, a meeting of artists and city administrators concerning what to do about the eight dysfunctional art factories in the City of Barcelona. Continue reading “Creativity and Leadership”

The Significance of Heritage

Text of a five-minute response I was asked to make at the South-Central Regional conference of the RSA on Heritage, Southampton in June 11th 2016. Like a lot of my contributions it took the form of a provocation designed to promote some lateral thinking about the comforts of the subject. As is also usual there is a lot of recycled material in here too, so some of it might seem familiar.  Continue reading “The Significance of Heritage”

20th Century Art and Chichester Cathedral

The extraordinary body of works of modern art and design commissioned and held by the Cathedral in Chichester since the latter half of the twentieth century now forms a group of exceptional interest and significance among English cathedrals, giving Chichester a leading position as a patron of late C20 creative work by artists of the first rank. In the following listings these artists are mentioned in bold and the Cathedral dignitary concerned is underlined.  Continue reading “20th Century Art and Chichester Cathedral”

Chichester’s 20th Century Buildings

A walking tour around the city of the architectural and public art heritage. With grateful thanks to my colleague Nevil Hopkins.

The 20th Century did not exactly contribute a wealth of landmark buildings to Chichester and it reflected the work of even fewer big-name architects. Continue reading “Chichester’s 20th Century Buildings”

Content Strategy

This series of suggestions comes from a WordPress workshop I attended a few years ago in Brighton, that buzzy digital city. If you want an effective website then success lies less in your technological choices than in the quality of your thinking and forward planning. Was it ever any different, whatever your context? Continue reading “Content Strategy”

The Archaeology of this Generalist

The power of integrated, joined-up thinking is recognized and new generalists are required, able to grasp specialist knowledge as well as able to range across disciplines

Charles Landry

I am not a very focussed person and it takes me a lot of effort to structure anything. I also just can’t hack doing proper research.
Undismayed, not to say brazen, I have converted this evident intellectual laziness, if not inability, into a positive by making a virtue out of not being expert.

All of which makes me a proud generalist. Continue reading “The Archaeology of this Generalist”