Liberal democracies have developed various devices to help to ensure that public funding of the arts and culture does not bring with it political control of content—the “arm’s length” relationship between government and cultural organisations; the decentralisation of decisions about cultural priorities from government to individuals via tax-deductible donations; a legal framework that seeks to circumscribe the legislative limits placed on freedom of expression; and a free and vigilant press. 这些都是来之不易的——而且是缓慢而不完美的——但其结果是,试图对博物馆进行政治控制的尝试相对较少,而政治干预的尝试也相对较少, governments often come off the worse for it.

Some of the most famous flare-ups, 比如围绕美国国家艺术基金会(National Endowment for the Arts)为罗伯特·梅普尔索普(Robert Mapplethorpe)提供资金的文化战争, Karen Finley and Andres Serrano in the early years of the Reagan presidency, were, in any case, largely manufactured spectacles, 辩论双方的参与者都在寻找一场吵闹的战斗,并利用社交媒体前的技术最大化两极分化. (If in doubt, 读读约翰·弗朗梅尔1993年的回忆录,这本书讲述了他在NEA主席期间陷入的一场争吵, Leaving Town Alive.)

Paying a price

非自由民主是另一回事:政治控制通常是政府支持的代价. The weakening of legal protections to both freedom of expression and freedom of the press, which are a hallmark of populist and nationalist agendas, make that control both easier to exercise and less evident to the world at large. We are witnessing the global rise of illiberal democracy, fuelled by the disruptions of 30 years of globalisation, “euro-scepticism”, migration precipitated by war and climate change, Islamophobia, terrorism, 2008年金融危机后的10年里采取的紧缩措施也造成了不平等. 这使得民粹主义和民族主义政府在世界七大民主国家中的五个——印度上台执政, the US, Brazil, Mexico and the Philippines—as well as in Japan, Colombia, Turkey, Hungary and Poland, and, as part of coalitions, in Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Chile, Finland, Greece, Italy, Israel, Latvia, Lithuania, the Netherlands, Norway, Slovakia and Switzerland.

更多的州在地区和地方一级设有民粹主义政府,或作为重要的少数党. 这些国家包括澳大利亚、加拿大、捷克共和国、丹麦、爱沙尼亚、法国、德国和罗马尼亚. In those countries with elections later this year—India, Belgium, Denmark, Portugal, Greece, Ukraine—polls anticipate a further strengthening of the populist and nationalist vote, as they do for the European Parliamentary elections in May. 《det365首页》(Guardian)最近对31个欧洲国家的民粹主义趋势进行了分析,得出的结论是,四分之一的欧洲人现在投票支持民粹主义. To put it bluntly, populism and nationalism are firmly in the ascendant.

Museums, alongside news organisations, publishing houses and universities, tend, historically, to have a strained relationship with populist governments for obvious reasons. 大多数博物馆所宣称的价值观与民粹主义和民族主义的价值观明显格格不入:即对艺术表达自由的承诺, to scientific method, to intellectual scepticism and an aspiration to objectivity and reason. And for many museums, overt and proactive commitments to diversity and inclusivity have joined these in recent years. 任何对这一价值观的攻击,从隐含意义上说,都是对该行业存在的理由(être)的攻击.

So far the assaults have mostly been rhetorical rather than real. Universities and the press have fared somewhat worse. But straws in the wind include the rewriting of the narrative at the new Holocaust Museum in Budapest by Viktor Orban’s Fidesz government; and a similar intervention by Poland’s Law and Justice Party government at the new Museum of the Second World War in Gdansk, whose director, Pawel Machcewicz, was dismissed when he sought to resist government intervention. Italy’s minister of culture, Alberto Bonisoli, 威胁不再与一群外国人续约以经营国家博物馆, 这种威胁和持续的不确定性已导致至少一名非意大利籍董事离职. Brazil’s President Jair Bolsonaro is threatening a rewrite of Brazil’s entire national history, 为葡萄牙人免除奴隶制,恢复1965-84年的独裁统治. He is also gunning for the Rouanet Law, 为艺术的企业支持者和公共部门的艺术赞助提供税收减免——这两种机制在过去20年里一直是巴西公众支持艺术的主要机制. In the US at federal level, Trump’s assault mostly comes down to funding cuts. His latest budget attempts, for the third time, to eliminate federal funding for the arts and humanities, public television and radio, libraries and museums—about $897m in total.

一些经历了民粹主义浪潮的国家的自由民主历史比其他国家短,也弱, and future-gazing is axiomatically speculative. But the clear implication is that if current trends continue, populist parties will take control in more local, regional and national jurisdictions, and based on the evidence to date and on the underlying thrust of their political agendas, greater political pressure on the cultural sector and therefore on museums of art, history and science can be anticipated. It is not difficult to see the slow-motion collision course.

Insidious control

The political erosion of institutional independence is insidious. 蒂莫西•斯奈德(Timothy Snyder)的精辟著作《bat365官网登录》(On Tyranny: Twenty Lessons from the Twentieth century),以及因民族主义复兴而引发的大量书籍和文章, 民主国家的民粹主义和威权主义,让det365首页想起了上世纪30年代欧洲这些进程的机制. 最初的迹象通常很难发现,因为它们通常以非英雄的形式出现, 但机构领导人却采取了微妙的先发制人的行动,以避免一场政治冲突. The temptation is to self-censor, 正如Okwui Enwezor在他最后一次采访中谈到他在慕尼黑Haus der Kunst的经历. The loss of autonomy happens “first slowly, then all at once”, to use Ernest Hemingway’s characterisation of the slide into bankruptcy. 公共资助者——实际上是所有资助者——不断寻求用与方案有关的资金替代核心资金的趋势大大增加了行使控制的机会.

国际博物馆理事会(International Council of Museums)的道德准则是:“无论资金来源或治理模式如何, museums should maintain control of the content and integrity of their programmes, 展览和活动……博物馆在专业和机构方面的高度诚信和自主权,不应受到经济或政治利益的影响.” Risk registers, 目前,在有关博物馆治理和管理最佳实践的文献中,风险缓解战略和机构复原力的宣传占有重要地位. Therefore good museum risk-assessment should probably, regrettably, 包括保护核心价值观的应急计划,以及当这些价值观被关键利益相关者明确否定时,他们所告知的内容.

艾德里安·埃利斯是det365首页公司的董事和全球文化区网络的主席. Additional research was undertaken by Kara Bledsoe of AEA Consulting.

By using AEA Consulting’s website you agree to our use of cookies to deliver a better experience.

AcceptPrivacy Policy