The Art of the Impossible
Three things strike me on the pushback to funding art on the bridge:
1) The city has spent $6 million plus dollars in demolition to create parking lots. Yet $325K on art work — something constructive — is deemed outrageous.
2) The new meme is that somehow the art work is too focused on the City of Amsterdam and as such, it will limit interest. I don’t get this at all — if you visit a historic site, you are necessarily learning about that specific site. I don’t see whhy the artwork has to make reference to anything outside of Amsterdam. I think we have enough history to make it stand on our own.
3) The reasons for (1) and (2) above originate from the belief that the city holds nothing of interest for residents or visitors alike. As the recently completed County survey of local attitudes proves, the level of local negativity exceeds most other places on a national level. In other words, what really is at play is more of the negative, do-nothing, fatalism that inflicts the city year after year, decade after decade. So this is not really about art work at all — it’s merely another melodrama in how much the city sucks and why nothing will work here.
It’s the art of the impossible here.
Simple as that.