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In Perspective #2 - Centres for the arts, threatened and promising, part 2: beyond the A7

(What preceded. In the previous chapter, I thought back to my father. Who sought support from a predecessor of today's Cultuurconnectie to set up a creativity centre. And how he himself later downsized an arts centre precisely. Most municipalities now focus on cultural education in education, not on individual amateurs. What is the best model? And can you... 

In Perspective #2: Centres for the arts: threatened and promising - urban facilities

My father had received a visit from Amsterdam. It was a gentleman from the Association for Creativity Development VCO. He came to advise on how to set up a creativity centre and how to apply for a subsidy from the municipality. Goldsmithing was my father's hobby - secretly the profession he had hoped for as a boy - and in our... 

Toothless culture debate offers few new insights

On Thursday morning 12 November, the culture spokespersons of Christen Unie, VVD, D'66 and Groen Links entered into a debate on culture. However, the debate organised by LACK (Landelijk Kennisinstituut Cultuureducatie en Amateurkunst) Kunsten '92, the Fund for Culture Participation and the Boekman Foundation did not become scintillating for a moment.

'A lot of people are waiting for the moment when they can sing together again. Make sure that by the time Corona is over, they still have that opportunity.'

Maybe I am not looking closely but I miss in the various media, as I did years ago during the demolition policy, the role of amateur music practice on which many a musician depends. At the moment, the focus is partly on venues and theatres asking their visitors to accept vouchers or donate their tickets. Fine... 

'We all get rid of our camera fears' - Stephanie Hermes of the Hague Theatre House is looking for bright spots (Culture Press Coronapodcast No 18)

'When the lockdown came, we actually decided right away to continue, but online. So we opened digital studios.' Like so many others, the Hague Theatre House also entered the digital world of Zoom, the app with which Culture Press also records podcasts remotely. 'People rehearse for presentations and performances. We have created a talent environment for that. An online place with films,... 

Why measuring leads to knowing less and measuring even more. On the futility of trend reports and indices

They have learned something at Boekman. The foundation, which since this year has had the honour of managing the culture index, understands that trend graphs say precious little. We have observed this several times on this site, and the researchers now confirm this wholeheartedly. So this year the club is doing things differently. For the past few months, sixty wise men and women have been... 

'It is crucial that people who mature here - also as artists - can stay connected to Amersfoort'

For De Stadsbron, Amersfoort's journalistic background site, I chart the cultural sector of the Keistad. On that site now, an interview with Friederike Weisner, director of Theatre De Lieve Vrouw. 'According to Weisner, the lack of a university or college ensures that the need for knowledge is visible: 'You will always have to be innovative as a city. There ... 

M carbunaru [CC BY-SA 3.0 (], from Wikimedia Commons

All balls to Cuijk. Why it really is a good idea for the Netherlands to have a Capital of Culture every year.

How nice it would be if Zutphen were to be Cultural Capital of the Netherlands next year, proudly representing itself and thanks to a strong impulse from its surrounding area: the province of Gelderland. They could immediately tackle the hopeless situation of the local theatre, the kids from the suburbs could also go to hip-hop in a real hall and everyone in the Netherlands would know... 

Curious: arts sector support institutes turn against plans for new theatre and music sector institutes

There are quite a few petitions floating around these days. The most curious of all petitions was in the digital mailbox today. In it, the existing support institutes in the cultural sector urge the Lower House not to put money into new support institutes. In doing so, clubs such as the Landelijk Kennniscentrum Amateurkunst (LKCA), Cultuur+Ondernemen, and the Boekmanstichting put in a small but... 

10 million back. Van Engelshoven means business.

Of course, this is really actually better news than what was already in the coalition agreement. The extra 10 million fought for last year for performing arts institutions that were good enough but fell below the saw line because of running out of money will get structural money added. Good news for a few clubs that would really be out of business otherwise, like Orkater. The good news... 

VSB discontinues Poetry Prize: more funds shift focus from art to society

This week it was announced that the VSB Fund is discontinuing the VSB Poetry Prize. That announcement came rather hard throughout the art world. After all, the fund stated that it was going to focus much less on culture and more on social causes. It appears to fit a trend. More funds are shifting their focus from culture to society. At least, that ... 

AFK - Amsterdam Fund for the Arts

Wanted: Advisors one-off grants - Amsterdam Fund for the Arts (AFK)

Vacancy: Advisors one-off grants - Amsterdam Fund for the Arts (AFK) From 1 March 2017 The Amsterdam Fund for the Arts (AFK) invests in art that enriches life in the city. The AFK provides grants to artists and cultural organisations, drives innovation and stimulates the quality, dynamism and pluriformity of Amsterdam art. The AFK supports both experiment... 

AFK - Amsterdam Fund for the Arts

Amsterdam Fund for the Arts (AFK) seeks Supervisory Board member

Amsterdam Fund for the Arts (AFK) seeks a member for the Supervisory Board from 1-1-2017 The AFK invests in art that enriches life in the city. The AFK provides subsidies to artists and cultural organisations, drives innovation and stimulates the quality, dynamism and pluriformity of Amsterdam art. The AFK supports both experimentation and proven quality,... 

'Give the people a say in arts policy'

Since the financial crisis and subsequent cuts, the cultural sector has been forced to legitimise itself. Scientific research has to demonstrate the social outcome of art and culture. To assist the cultural sector in this, the Landelijk Kennisinstituut voor Cultuureducatie en Amateurkunst (LKCA) therefore started the so-called 'fact factory', a numerical overview of key data and developments in the... 

Particular Dutch culture remains under the radar due to amateur status

The India Dance Festival received just a little less attention from the national media this weekend than the Amsterdam Dance Event. Something that theatre director Leo Spreksel of The Hague-based Korzo Theatre was a bit worried about on Sunday. Because for three days now, his halls have been so muddy that he even turned away visitors who came all the way from Switzerland.... 

Sierk van Meeuwen, Terrorist (source:

'Also nice. A hot chick with a kalashnikov.' Amateurs and pros in Haags Gemeentemuseum

The annual Summer Expo at Gemeentemuseum Den Haag is open to submissions from amateurs. But in the end, as many as 70% of the entrants turn out to have attended an art school, and even 80% of the selected entries were made by professional artists. With two guests, I visit the Summer Expo. Museum visitor Rob van Berlo picks his favourites. Gallery owner Nena Milinkovic I ask the same,... 

How do you remove the negative sound around 'amateur art'?

A tricky question, but Festival Havenwerk director Erik-Jan Post has an idea and likes to bad some sacred cows. About arts education. About the concept of 'amateur'. About how big you should want to be as a festival. 'We are much less a festival in the classic sense. Havenwerk is more of a meeting place, with the participants at the centre. This year, therefore, the entrance fees are... 

LKCA meeting Kanteling

Cultural education on the precipice: 18 points of debate where one strategy is needed

Tilting is in. And that is good as long as tilting means taking a sharp turn and following the freshly chosen course with new vigour. Tilting is unwise if you are on the brink. Because then tilting soon becomes tumbling. Cultural education, I fear, has begun a tumble. Last year, it appeared that... 

10 viral stories from Culture Press for 235,000 real readers

Always start with the good news. The Information Department of the Ministry of Education, Culture and Science did a very good job in 2014. They sent one jubilant press release after another into the world. While there was actually hardly any good news to report. About culture. But because there are a lot of lazy journalists, good news often goes in a... 

Should Halbe Zijlstra apologise only to Overijssel?

Ten per cent fewer performances and ten per cent fewer visitors in Overijssel headlines RTV Oost. Bam! That chops it. Into the bin, that jubilant press release by Jet Bussemaker. And if there is one province that does not need to apologise to Halbe Zijlstra, it is Overijssel. Well, we reported earlier that apologies are not necessary anyway, but as a province... 

In advance, 5 reasons why no one needs to apologise to Halbe Zijlstra.

According to the VVD, all artists and art lovers in the Netherlands should say 'sorry' to Halbe Zijlstra. Because they were so angry with him when he abolished 30 per cent of art subsidies without any underlying idea. After all, according to the Ministry of Culture, things were going fan-tas-tically with the arts in the Netherlands. Anyone who reads the press release the ministry issued yesterday on that... 

Another boost for the Netherlands: ministry understands usefulness of music education.

'The experts have written an inspiring guide, which demonstrates the importance of good music education and also makes clear which steps need to be taken to achieve this. The experts spoke to representatives of primary education, teacher training institutes and the cultural sector. The guide has broad support. Like the experts, I believe that good music education is a responsibility of... 

Photo: Wijbrand Schaap

Joop Daalmeijer Marathon (closing): 'But who knows anything about it? They are all generalists sitting there.'

Wijbrand Schaap: 'The amateur arts. I experienced the cuts myself at the Utrecht Centre for the Arts in Utrecht. First, they were heavily cut back there back in 2001 under Leefbaar. They survived that, and now they were just recovering a bit...' Joop Daalmeijer: ' ...and now everything is going to the schools.' Wijbrand Schaap: 'There are... 

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