13
Aug
10

a country that doesn’t hate art

that’s argentina, folks

Books, though, are just one example of the extraordinary commitment to culture in Buenos Aires. It holds a literary festival here every year, one of many festivals celebrating theatre, dance, music and film. Its annual international book fair draws a million visitors.

In a city of 13 million struggling to get by, it spends three per cent of its budget on culture. The sidewalks are heaving and the subway stations are crumbling, but there is money, by God, for free tickets to the Tango!

It is about civic priority. Argentina has not recovered from its economic collapse of 10 years ago, when it defaulted on its debt and deflated its currency, but the show must go on.

“If you don’t invest in culture, you go home,” Hernan Lombardi, the minister of culture, says of governments that ignore this deeply human need. “In a crisis, we worry about losing identity. That’s when we need to support culture.”

[movie city news]

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