Tuesday, April 18, 2006

That's where the art will go....

I was coerced into attending some more irrelevant training this morning. The purpose of the session was to update staff on the progress of a new ‘Single System’ – an attempt to bring together all the various current strands of red tape and combine them to make one big, fat strand of red tape. This has taken a whole family tree of subgroups and well over a year to reach a stage at which the ‘update’ was able to tell us that the launch of this procedural panacea was still well over a year away. I suspected that some people in the room would no longer have all their faculties by the time the system was ‘live’ – indeed, they might not even be ‘live’ themselves.

The presentation was painfully dull – with moments of inadvertent hilarity. Notably, we were told that the new system would feature ‘art’. Space had been made at the top of the red tape screens for the inclusion of ‘art’.

‘And see where that sunflower is at the moment….that’s where the art will go. You can even choose which kind of art you want to see while you’re working.’

Bite-sized art for the rd tape monkeys of the art system – how thoughtful. We were then made privy to the high-level thinking behind this innovation.

‘They’ve done that because they reckon ‘Art’s good for the Arts Council’.’

There were a few titters at that point, but not the great clamour of derision that this statement deserved. It could, on reflection, have been a very cunning way to keep the listeners’ attention – moments earlier I had been toying with the idea of jabbing my leg with my car keys.

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