Artists should have been consulted: BKC on art gallery move

Artists should have been consulted: BKC on art gallery move

Artists should have been consulted: BKC on art gallery move

Karnataka Pradesh Congress Committee vice-president B K Chandrashekar has reiterated his opposition to any private group taking over the management of the Venkatappa Art Gallery (VAG).

Chandrashekar has issued a press statement following Tourism and Industries Minister R V Deshpande’s response to the former’s observations on March 23.

The former minister - who has stated that he has no reservations about the Corporate Social Responsibility concept - is of the view that the government too should not manage or control the day-to-day affairs of VAG or similar cultural organisations.

“The actual management of VAG should be the responsibility of the Karnataka Lalithakala Academy. What is the point of appointing M S Murthy, a person of talent and accomplishment, as chairman of the Lalithakala Academy, if he was completely ignored in the process and decision of adoption of VAG? I understand that Murthy was not even informed, let alone consulted.”

He states that the project implementation committee (PIC), defined in the MoU, is an example of how the main stakeholders (namely the artists) are left out.

“The PIC consists of the Tourism minister, senior officers and an item which says invitees. The Kannada and Culture Minister is not even a member of this committee. A purely ‘tourism as industry’ approach can result in this kind of a thing,” the statement reads.

Citing that all curatorial, exhibition and programming decisions will be governed by the private agency MAP, its curators and advisory panel, Chandrashekar has said that the controversy could have been avoided if artists and noted writers were associated at the stage of discussion of the concept of adoption.

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