New Motto for the NEA?

Previously reported here and elsewhere, President Obama has nominated a new chair of the National Endowment of the Arts. Folks are expecting Rocco Landesman, an accomplished Broadway producer, to shake things up at the NEA. Over at Art Scatter, a post by Bob Hicks about the NEA appointment has stirred up some thought-provoking comments, which I’ve been meaning to add to except that … well you know how that goes.

Meanwhile, on the LA Times Arts Blog, “Culture Monster,” Christopher Knight recommended a change in the NEA’s motto. He describes the current slogan – “A Great Nation Deserves Great Art” – as an “imperial bit of provincial pomposity.”

I agree with that sentiment. Implicit in the slogan is that all you crappy nations deserve the art you get. It’s all part of that American exceptionalism that makes me cringe. Is it possible to be a patriot without claiming that Americans are more loving, caring, hard-working, creative, inventive, freedom-lovin’ than everyone else on earth?

Knight recommends a change to:

“Great Art Makes a Great Nation.”

What think you?

Here are a few ideas to get you thinking:

I Have a Dream … About Art!

Our Art Doesn’t Torture Either.

America is for Lovers … of Art.

Our Art Looks Great AND is Less Filling.

Art Brings Good Things to Life (sponsored by GE)

With a Name Like America, the Art Has Got to be Good.

What Can Culture Do For You?


cynseattle said...

I like Knight's suggestion for turning the slogan around quite a lot...and of course, could suggest some other options:

"Art. It's not just for breakfast anymore."

"I can't believe it's (not)Art!"

"Where's the Art?"

and my favorite:

"When you change to Art, you'll change for good."

Unknown said...

Or how about, to twist a line from one of those meat-slobbering orcs in one of the "Lord of the Rings" movies:

"Looks like art's back on the menu, boys!~"

Jessica said...

Art. It's what's for dinner.

(A bit similar to cynseattle's breakfast slogan.)