Scottish ()pera appears to have raised false hopes that the National Lottery will offer an alternative solution to its cash crisis. which could mean the company going part-time. lt hopes to persuade Scottish ()fﬁce ministers and the Scottish Arts Council to relax the rules which pre‘. 3“ Lottery money being used to pay for running costs. but such a change was effectively ruled out this week.
SAC chairman William Brown said in a letter to The Herald last week that he believed that this change would happen in the ‘long run'. but warned that any hasty relaxation ofthe rules relating to revenue funding could mean that
Lottery cash simply replaced arts grants
from other sources. ‘All the Arts Councils in Britain are working together to ﬁnd ways of loosening Lottery rules in such a way as to avoid such a negative outcome.’ he stated.
An SAC spokesman conﬁrmed that there were no immediate plans to push for a change in the Lottery rules. ‘There's so much to do in catching up with the arts infrastructure.' he said. ‘There are so many holes appearing in revenue funding that it could swallow up the entire National Lottery on bailing out overdrafts and we'd still be no further forward.‘
This will come as disappointing news to Scottish Opera. which will become a part-time company if it cannot ﬁnd at
Citizens’ Theatre: not looking to Lottery least another £700,000 at year to cover running costs. The National Lottery money is only available to put up buildings,‘ said Scottish Opera marketing manager Roberta Doyle. ‘We think it's sensible to have a debate on whether money should be spent on
Scottish Opera unlikely to ﬁnd winning ticket in Lottery
getting artists to perform in them.‘
The Citizens' Theatre in Glasgow is also faced with the prospect of performing part-time if it loses its £180,000 grant from Strathclyde Regional Council when it disbands in April. However general manager Sharman Weir believes calling for a change to National Lottery spending rules now might mean a short-term cash injection at the expense of a longer-term loss of public subsidy. ‘()ne of the dangers is that you end up with shiny new arts buildings and nothing to put in them. but I'd hate to see the Lottery become a replacement for public funding.‘ she said. (Eddie Gibb)
Pledge of Fidelity: enforced chastity
Chastity belt artist reveals secret world
An artist who spent two months wearing a chastity belt to make a statement about the social restraint of women believes the devices may be in use for real outside the fetish scene.
In Pledge of Fidelity, Louisa Maclver documents the two months she spent wearing a chastity belt, a steel and rubber contraption which literally kept her private parts under lock and key. Although ‘Pledge’ is primarily a personal response to this device, Maclver’s background research indicated that chastity belts may still be used for their original medieval purpose. She discovered that at least four companies are manufacturing the belts in Britain, though their identities are hidden by a series of Post Office box numbers.
“The people that I met on the S&M scene told me that there was only a small number of people who actually used the belts,’ said Maclver. ‘The manufacturer I contacted makes around 100 a year, so I can only presume the rest go elsewhere. I did a lot of research, but found out very little.’ (Ann Donald)
The Pledge of Fidelity, The Pledge of Self Dlsclpllne is at the 8011, Glasgow from Mon 30 Def-Sat 4 lie v.
Hospital art isjust what the doctor ordered
Staff at Edinburgh’s Eastern General Hospital will be getting a bonus, of sorts, in their pay packet at the end of this month - a blank sheet of paper. The idea is to encourage everyone who works in the hospital, from consultants to porters, to contribute to an art exhibition planned for the out-patients department early next year with a hospital threatened with closure, the project organisers are expecting a strong response.
The Eastern has had an active arts policy for several years with many local artists getting their first public exhibition on the hospital’s walls. During every exhibition, the public and members of staff are encouraged to vote for their favourite painting. The
winner is bought for the hospital using its modest purchasing fund which was originally set up with a Scottish Arts Council grant, but is now self- sufficient. The 20 per cent commission on work sold during exhibitions is used to buy pictures for the hospital’s growing collection of contemporary Scottish art.
‘I believe art does do something in the context of illness,’ says Dr John Munro, convener of the hospital’s exhibition committee. ‘People find it soothing and refreshing because it’s not too clinical. It’s more than a diversion — it’s therapeutic.’
flow the plan is to hand over the walls of the hospital’s corridors to
give a chance of artistic expression to
the staff. It’s expected the threat of closure hanging over the Eastern, with patients transfering to the new Royal Infirmary due to open in Little France by the end of the century, will be a dominant theme. ‘It will be a soundbite in pictures of people working in the IIIIS,’ says Dr Ross Cranston, who is organising the project. ‘We’ve asked every hospital worker and the responses will be anonymous, so it should be representative.’
Already the posters that were put up around the hospital to announce the scheme have been defaced in a very creative way, according to Cranston, which suggests the artistic responses should be robust. (Eddie Gibb)
No M74 group promise
The ﬁrst major test of the Criminal Justice Act looks likely to come next month as campaigners against the M74 prepare for an illegal march in Glasgow‘s south side. The Act was passed in part to give the police more powers over anti-motorway protests. as peace camps flourished at construction sites round the country.
In what is shaping tip to be a repeat of the M77 campaign of civil disobedience. the protesters have vowed to continue to ﬁght the urban motorway extension after Glasgow City Council's decision to give the scheme planning approval last week. ‘We have tried to use legal protest and you don't get heard.‘ said Rosie Kane of the No M74 group. ‘lt‘s time to get the mitts off. Everyone at the planning meeting felt cheated. We have tried the democratic process, but it doesn't seem to exist when it comes to motorways.‘
The march is planned for I I November. but the start point is being kept secret because the organisers admit it is likely to breach the new Act. The government hopes to attract private capital for the M74 scheme, but protesters are warning potential investors that its campaign could force costs up. ‘We will be telling anyone thinking of investing that they had better be ready to write a blank cheque,‘ said Kane. ‘It's a bad
investment because security costs are going to be sky-high.‘
However the No M74 group is aware that the M77 protest camp was dogged by the perception that it was occupied by outsiders. ‘lt has got to come from the people that stay in the community.‘ said Rob Fairlie of No M74.
After the planning meeting. Friends of
s to disrupt
Anti-road rotesters: learning the lessons of the M77 campaign
the Earth Scotland came out strongly against the District Council‘s decision. ‘The hearing really wasn‘t adequate for the arguments involved so we‘re calling on the Scottish Ofﬁce to hold a public inquiry.‘ said a spokesman. ‘We were appalled at the decision but not that surprised. We will continue to oppose the road.‘ (Stephen Naysmith)
4 The List 20 Oct-2 Nov 1995