More British go to arts events than to football games

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Friday’s Guardian had a pro-arts editorial in the face of looming arts budget cuts. Read.

Among the amazing factoids in the article (emphasis mine):

Funding for the contemporary arts (as distinct from museums and galleries) has more than doubled since 1998: next year, Arts Council England will get £411m.

…the number of people going regularly to arts events has risen by more than 800,000 over the past three years, while dropping entrance charges at museums and galleries has led to 11 million extra visitors since 2001.

Indeed, people are now more likely to drop in on a museum than go to a football game.

At the bottom of the page, there are more links to other budget stories. Hope they do small surgery and save the patient.

Here’s something that might explain why people like to go to British Museums, or at least to the new Tate Modern. How about that Olafur Eliasson sun piece we’ve all read about. Blockbuster turnout for atmospheric art. Sounds like a winning formula.

TM by the way is hosting a show of works by hot, Belgian painter Luc Tuymans. Show opens tomorrow and runs through Sept. 26. (image is “Diagnostische Blick IV, 1992) More at Tate Modern.

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