Culture of the Arts

I had the great privilege of sitting down with professor David Magidson (PhD) of the Arts and Theatre department at Wayne State University to discuss the research he was doing in regards to the economical and non-econimcal aspects of the arts and culture in everyday living.

The research was structured around getting a better understanding of the everyday value of arts and to be able to look at the economical implications that come with art. By documenting the place of arts and culture in our lives it provides us a look in to what the arts are featured as in each city and why they matter. Professor Magidson also explained how arts is such a broad term it is being almost ignored in the sense that it categorically is not present. For example, he expanded on that by saying art can be anything from a flute to a kite in the sky, it’s the perception by which it is viewed that alters its motive in everyday life. Economically it is all mixed up in regards to what is considered art, for instance, he mentioned how in the U.S. yearly budget report it showed all the arts separated in different categories, so instead of what is known as an instrument which is considered artistry that would be labeled under timber and wood work which is really bizarre to me. The significance of this research was to find ways to help develop challenged communities with ways to not only attract tourists but to also brighten up the community in which the art is presented. This could be a new art gallery or simply a beautiful statue, anything that can broaden a horizon is worth the addition.

The study was conducted in a couple different ways including surveying groups and interviewing people who would come through a town that had a real life model on display to see if that would get them to return or want to purchase something. Sadly though, professor Magidson stated the results were usually negative and the overall impact of the research was not as successful as he had hoped.


4 thoughts on “Culture of the Arts

  1. I am a person that has a passion for art and film. As a former employee of the DIA (Detroit Institute of Arts) I have an appreciation for art, and when I found out that your post is based on that I had to check it out. I like your title it was short and got straight to the point. Your writing is strong, you briefly explained in your own words what professor Magidson’s research was all about, along with his personal perspective of what art is. I also like the shortcut to the theater department’s website that you provided in the first paragraph, that was a nice touch. The only problems that I found in your post is the videos. Your videos has strong audio and good introductions, but the professor was very difficult to see. It seems like he was out of focus, and it hurt my eyes looking at the video because of the focus. I would also suggest in your text that you provide some direct quotes from professor Magidson, but overall this is a very good post. This link that I provided below also relates to your post. It is from an ArtsJournal blog website, and the story is tilted, “For What It’s Worth.” This article explains a lot about what you mentioned in your post, on the economic impact of arts.

    Good Work


    1. Haha, yes the videos did not turn out so good after I came home and uploaded, good thing it happened now and not on a professional platform. Good link as well, I like the angle it was structured around.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. This research is really interesting. I have never been a huge art buff, but I do frequent the Detroit Institute of Arts. Does his research mention the impact that something like the DIA could have on a city? I know the DIA is a huge tourist attraction and people come from all over the country to view it. In the following article, Planetware lists the DIA as the #1 tourist attraction in Detroit, beating many local favorites

    I am interested in seeing the rest of the research because although he says his results has not been the best so far, the completed project with in-depth information could completely transform a town. An Arbor is known for their art festival they put on. Maybe if a smaller town put something like that on they could become a tourist attraction.

    Art isn’t just about the financial gain; it’s about the cultural gain. Having the ability to experience another cultures art is a way to view their society. I hope that this research will result in more towns investing in art, in whatever forms they think is best.


  3. Ali Joumaa conducted a really important interview with Dr. David Magidson, a professor in the Arts and Theatre department at Wayne State University. The interview was about Professor Magidson’s research on art and how it is chosen and funded by municipalities and communities and why a particular piece or style is chosen over another. One of the most interesting parts of the research was how it affected people and their attitudes about visiting more often or possibly even moving into a community, would having brighter murals, art galleries or maybe statues alter a person’s mood and decisions? The research focused on surveying people about what type or kind of art would energized them and have a positive effect on their visit. The research is not scientific because the definition of art is always up to interpretation and constantly evolving. The way art is presented affects people in different ways and it is always an in exact science to really find out the return you get when funding art. The benefit and economic value or lack of is hard to quantify, but the research is relevant and needed. The interview was stimulating and really got me asking myself, what is art?


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s