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Now Europe is Slashing Its Arts Funding

In general contrast to the United States, Europe has always been more willing to support art for its own sake, without any huge concern for the profit margin or the bottom line or whether or not something winds up in the black, because art is culture, and culture does not have an endpoint. Culture evolves, fluidly, over time. This is how it has been for decades. Then the bottom fell out of the global economy a couple of years ago. Now Europe’s artistic companies are feeling the same kind of squeeze that America’s have been dealing with for years, and politicians like Holland’s Halbe Zijlstra are starting to talk about institutions having to justify the economics of what they do. Which is certainly reassuring, and in no way ominous. (Larry Rohter, The New York Times)