national endowment for the arts

We have an NEA chair

From the New York Times: Producer Is Chosen to Lead Arts Endowment.

The appointment, which is expected to be announced on Wednesday, surprised many in the arts world. It ends months of speculation about who would be selected to lead the nation’s largest and most important arts organization.

The White House declined to discuss the appointment before the announcement. Mr. Landesman, whose appointment must be confirmed by Congress, also declined to comment.

“It’s potentially the best news the arts community in the United States has had since the birth of Walt Whitman,” said the playwright Tony Kushner. “He’s an absolutely brilliant and brave and perfect choice for the job.”

More on the NEA

From the New York Times:

Wait wait, I’ve got an idea

These two articles are oddly appropriate next to each other.

From the LA Times: Artists are Losing Jobs Fast and Furiously.

According to new research announced today by the National Endowment for the Arts, working artists are unemployed at a higher rate than other workers, and at a rate that is rising more rapidly than other professions. Presumably as a result, more artists are leaving their profession.

Couple that with this. From the Community Arts Network, A Proposed Job Swap To Save American Capitalism:

Do Wall Street executives deserve big bonuses during hard times? Does increased arts funding have a place in an economic stimulus package? I’ll leave it to others to debate these controversies. Meanwhile I’d like to make a modest proposal to solve some of our economic problems: Let’s do a job swap. We’ll put the corporate executives to work as artists while the artists run Wall Street.