YOU have got to laugh at the Scottish Government’s response to the so-called creative industries – this time it’s film – but, actually it could be any of the ailing creative disciplines that are often dependant on minuscule handouts from public sector bodies that vacuum up huge administration and staffing costs (your report, 31 March).
Now more taxpayers’ money may be wasted on yet another quango; the Film Industry leadership Group. I sometimes feel that our country is the reverse of that wonderful film, Goodbye Lenin where a brother and sister are too afraid to tell their mother – who is just coming out of a coma – that her beloved communism is dead so they pretend that it’s still flourishing. In Scotland, the powers that be think that every response to an arts issue is to set up more admin.
I have a better idea.
Why not give some of this money to actual arts producers; men and women who make stuff, yes they really are out there.
In Fife, Dysart filmmaker Lawrie Brewster is making two full-length feature films coming out this year, referendum artist Dominic Currie has just opened an art gallery in Fife and young filmmaker Alex Harron is having his short film No Set Door Price screened by our national broadcaster. None of this has been done with arts money but it should have been. This is happening all over Scotland and it needs proper financial support.
Until recently many of those on the admin side loved to host and back huge American projects that already have millions and a bankable star that will garner the investors’ return many times over while our indigenous art and film industry scramble for scraps like kids at a wedding scramble. Of course they do. It looks good in the media but it’s shortsighted and it has to change. So, I urge public sector arts bodies and the government to come out of your coma and engage with grassroots art producers instead of buying more desks and chairs for admin staff in expensive city centre offices.