FLAMING BRILLIANT Re: Flaming Lips, 481
After reading your article in the last issue. I went to the Flaming Lips gig in Glasgow and it was totally, utterly, mind- blowingly brilliant. Thanks for introducing me to the most extraordinary live band I‘ve ever seen.
CCA FLYING HIGH Further to a recent report in The Sunday Times (2 November) concerning CCA, I can state quite categorically that CCA is not in imminent danger of closure in this or any other year. This ‘non story' was hatched from leaked confidential documents between CCA and the Scottish Arts Council outlining CCA's concerns in relation to running costs associated with a 40% larger building post lottery development. These concerns were over three months old and have since been positively addressed in discussions between CCA and SAC.
Visitor targets for year two since redevelopment have been exceeded by over 20.000. while exhibitions such as Toby Paterson's first UK solo show ‘New Facade' and the Gordon Matta-Clark retrospective ‘The Space Between' achieved record attendances. In 2003 CCA has commissioned new work from home based artists such as Paterson, Rosalind Nashashibi, and Kenny Hunter. All of this is hardly the symptoms of an organization in its last throes.
That is not to say that there aren't issues. These however are not unique to CCA. Following the rapid rate at which new and remodelled arts buildings have sprung up all over the country there needs to be a period of consolidation and re-investment, in order that the Quality of the buildings can be matched by the art that they were designed to house.
More than ever it is time to invest in the artist. Despite the
2 THE LIST iii—~27 NOV 2003
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fact that Scotland's most recent and current crop of artists are the envy of the rest of Europe. the visual arts have not received the same level of investment or recognition from the funding bodies. as those in the performing arts. It is now time to recognize that in terms of developing Scotland's cultural identity beyond our borders. the visual arts are Our greatest asset.
MTV TOO BAD
I spent a rather balmy evening in Princes Street Gardens at the MTV in the Gardens event. It may be free (I'll have to work out how much of my council tax bill goes toward paying for the main event) so maybe I shouldn't complain but I felt dismayed by what was going on around me. The looks of disappointment on the faces of those teenagers down the front as Black Rebel Motorcycle Club came on and knocked out their plodding dirge for half an hour made me furious. It's a pop station getting publicity so where were the pop bands? Oh yeah. down the road with the corporate entertainment in Leith. We got to watch it on the telly so we should be grateful. I think not!
LET THEM DRINK TEA
No bewy of any kind at MTV in the Gardens? Shit coffee and over-priced water is the only thing on offer? MTV know how to throw a party in the Gardens don't they. They can fuck off if they think they're getting an invite to my house warming. They'd probably turn up with a couple of cups of Earl Grey. Ryan Finlay
Re: Snow Sports Guide, 481 I saw the cover of your Snow Sports issue and couldn't
resist buying it. I'm one of those saddles who's been talking for ages with my mates about going snowboarding, but have never got my act together. Too nervous. too poor. or just plain lazy. whatever; this year I'm going to have a go. But you got one thing wrong: a few days after your issue came out. so did the sunshine. Next time you publish a snow special. please arrange for me to get a weekend of deep. powdery snow in the Cairngorms to go with it.
The vultures are gathering around Scottish Opera and rubbing their hands with glee as it is forced to scale back productions and appeal for
LETTER OF THE ISSUE
GLASGOW’S MILES BETTER
Am I the only person who's getting miffed by the fact that Edinburgh’s always in the press for its ‘cultural achievements"? OK. I'll grant them MTV and the festivals. but it's simply not true that all the glam cultural events happen there. Glasgow has better gigs. better films. and at least until recently. it had much better art. But in Glasgow we just don't give ourselves any credit for our successes. and we seem incapable of following up on any of the good things that happen. Worse. with the inept actions of the Council, we're in danger of pissing our successes away. Where. for example. is the legacy of Glasgow's City of Architecture? That was a £40m year of investment. but aside from the housing project near Glasgow Green, there's little to show for it. It's time that Glasgow got its act together. Instead of closing down arts spaces like Tramway 2. the city fathers should actually put some energy into a
coherent approach to culture and communicating it clearly to the newspapers. and to magazines such as The List. Edinburgh is OK. but we're the ones who really know how to have a good time.
Stephen Coles Glasgow
TWO BOTTLES OF
An ideal drink for any occasion
extra funds. The £7.4m of annual subsidy may seem huge compared with grants to other ads organisations in Scotland but it pales into insignificance against amounts other European companies receive.
With the triumphant acclaim of this summer‘s magnificent Ring Cycle reverberating around the world, now is not the time to allow the anti- culture. dumb-it-down brigade to destroy our leading performing arts institution. It may be that the details of how the money is spent COuId be more clearly accounted for, but we should be rewarding not punishing Scottish Opera as one of the few brave. visionary centres of excellence this country has.
Peter Mitchell Edinburgh
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