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Question 17: In your opinion, how could society provide better support for the dissemination and the development of visual arts?


I think that for the moment it’s a little bit in decline unfortunately. I remember a period, I’m talking about the Moncton area or southern New Brunswick that was very prolific at one point in the sense that there were a lot of people, several people were collectors and regularly acquired works of art by Canadian artists, international artists and also Acadian artists. But it seems like the next generation over the past few years just hasn’t picked up the torch. The young generation that I would refer to as “yappi” who now have big houses, these lawyers and young doctors, compared with those who are older, the architects, the lawyers who I knew or from my generation, seem less… they seem more concerned with houses that are bigger and bigger, more posh. They are maybe too concerned with having a flat screen television, all the gadgets, the latest gadgets, the lawnmowers and all that. Whereas, a while back, I had the impression that people were satisfied with having a house, but there was a great need for works of art in the house. So if we could again convince this new generation, and it isn’t all bad there are some who have kept it up, but I would say fewer. Maybe also the art that is being created now doesn’t speak as much to some people, and that’s normal, art evolves. There are people who are doing experimental things, things are being done in the environment, “nature art” from which only documents remain. I remember clearly, I’m perhaps outside of the question, but I have a brother who’s a doctor, who is much older than I am. At some point he had a bit of money he wanted to invest and didn’t know how and he approached somebody. At the time he told me, You know I bought some original drawings from a guy, he said, he puts sheets in the desert. I said, is it Christo? He told me yeah it’s a guy, Christo, I bought that because… He’d gone to see a person who told him to buy Andy Warhols and Christos. He didn’t really know what he was buying, my brother, but by the time he realized that maybe they were better investments than… his pension plan was perhaps better than the stock market.