Thursday, June 18, 2009

On the function of Film, Art and Politics #1

Many years ago, I had a job in one of the film school libraries as a volunteer organising information on community arts projects. All so ideal: surrounded by films, researching art projects developed within and serving specific, isolated or undernourished communities. Fact is that it was incredibly dull sifting, filing and indexing. However, every now and then a scrap of paper would fall from a folder, or a proposal would come across the desk that reminded you why people devote their lives to bringing art or film or music to people, to communities and to the streets. This, written on a proposal for a worker's oral history project, has stayed with me for many years... it was a quote from storyteller Ron O'Hara as a reason why art about politics and therefore, both art and politics, are vital:
It's like a river which runs underground... You may not know where it is or what is happening but somehow, because of it, the grass grows greener.
As told by Ron O'Hara, Irish storyteller

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