The Cultural Stipend: Brazil to Give Money to Workers to Spend on Art

Art is indeed not the bread of life but the wine of life, 19th century German writer Jean Paul once remarked. But what if you're so poor that you barely have enough literal bread to eat, let alone art?

"In all developed countries, culture plays a key role in the economy," Culture Minister Marta Suplicy said in an interview on national television.

She recalled that popular former president Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva created "Bolsa Familia" (Family Grant), the program of conditional cash transfers to the poor which his successor, President Dilma Rousseff, expanded.

"Now we are creating food for the soul; Why would the poor not be able to access culture?" the minister said.

So, the Brazilian government is about to fix that: it plans to give workers a 50-real ($25) monthly stipend for cultural expenses like buying books and music, as well as going to the movies and museums.

From Art Daily: Link


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The link uses the work of British artist Antony Gormley as an example.

Wiki: ...Gormley's Event Horizon, consisting of 31 life-size and anatomically-correct casts of his body, installed in locations around New York City's Madison Square in 2010. Gormley said of the New York site that:

"Within the condensed environment of Manhattan's topography, the level of tension between the palpable, the perceivable and the imaginable is heightened because of the density and scale of the buildings" and that in this context, the project should "activate the skyline in order to encourage people to look around. In this process of looking and finding, or looking and seeking, one perhaps re-assess one's own position in the world and becomes aware of one's status of embedment.”

Those poor Brazilians.
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Actually, the average ticket price in Brasil in 2012 was R$ 11,01 (US$ 5,40), according to a paper published last week by Ancine (Brazilian film agency). Of course some theaters will charge up to R$ 50 (US$ 24,51) for a ticket to a 3d or Imax session in a luxurious seat. But then there are also modest theaters in the small towns where the ticket costs US$ 2 or maybe less.
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Well, with 50-real in Brazil (R$50) the only culture with the people has acess it´s go to bar to drink something cheap. Doesn't exist theaters or cinemas there cost less if 80-real (R$80 ou $40). That's a politican lure.

And the people who shall be entitled of this benefit it´s family the leaves with only R$250 per mouth (125 dollars), people who live under the poverty line.
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