Landesman hails end of “defensive” NEA

Posted on: October 22, 2009

Wednesday (10/21) on the Los Angeles Times blog Culture Monster, David Ng writes, “The first eight weeks of Rocco Landesman’s tenure as head of the National Endowment for the Arts have not been easy. … In an interview with The Times today, Landesman downplayed the recent partisan fighting that has dragged his organization into the media spotlight, saying that he remains optimistic about the power of art to help heal the national economy. … In November, Landesman will begin a nationwide tour that will combine speaking engagements and visits with local arts leaders, including planned stops in California, during which he will promote art as a viable tool to help local economies recover from the current recession. The tour was announced today in a speech Landesman gave in Brooklyn to a conference of arts grant-makers in which he highlighted some of his objectives for the trip as well as his administration. ‘While I want to state in no uncertain terms that the NEA is not a political agency and that when art becomes propaganda I lose all interest in it, I also want everyone to know that the days of a defensive NEA are over,’ he told the audience.”

Posted October 22, 2009