08 July 2007

GP - Fund for local paintings discussion

Just finished this essay moments ago for General Paper's homework. :)

  • More funds should be allocated for exhibition of local painting. Discuss.

Malaysia is a multi-cultural country and is rich in its distinctive local heritages. Arts, has been playing a vital role to this great achievement. Just recently local press had reported the local artists based in the capital’s signature artistic landmark, the Central Market, better known as the pasar seni in Bahasa Melayu. The government ministry of Culture, Arts and Heritage acknowledges this group of people who contributed to the local artistic development, had hinted to increase funding for the arts movement, including allocated funds for exhibition of local paintings. This issue receive praises from the publics for the government’s act to improvise local arts, but also drawn critics from certain parties whom labelled the government’s decision as a waste of resources.

The majority of the public give thumbs up for this decision is because this act will encourage and promote local artists and cultures, giving them more publicity to get the society’s attention. When the public are aware with the local arts and started to appreciate it and try to treasure it, and thus preserving and conserving the unique traditional paintings that would be easily forgotten in this modern world. This is a serious issue as the lost of people to succeed traditional paintings would bring an unimaginable effect upon the future generations who do not have any idea about local arts.

On the other hand, the exhibition of paintings would also give recognition for the artists who spend most of their lime involve with arts. This will give them a spiritual lift-up as they know their artworks are being accepted and appreciated by the public. This can also lead to the discovery of new talents in arts. More people will get involved in the circle of arts, possible making it one of the mainstream business as well, especially benefiting our country’s tourism.

Talk about Malaysia’s tourism, one cannot underestimate the effects of local paintings to tourists. Central Market itself had been a tourism attraction as tourists can get nice and affordable souvenirs there. Some might brought paintings back to their country and promote it to their friends or families, indirectly attracting more tourists flock to our country, which is beneficial for our economic growth. Although this effort seems to be in small-scale, but the long term effects the paintings brought to our tourism cannot be ignored. The paintings also encourage future arts investment globally, as more and more local paintings are being recognised internationally and possible being on par with other masterpieces from foreign artists.

Those who voice out objections with this plan of course got their reasons to backup their arguments. Some complain that the government should allocate the funds for something more important, like educations, rural area developments, charity works and so on. They point out that although arts’ movement cannot be neglected as well, but the priority of the funding should be given for more practical uses.

They also comment that the arts exhibition is not profitable as most of the time people would just go to exhibition see the paintings but not buying them as mostly those paintings would cost hundreds and thousands. Those unsold artworks most of the time would be kept by the artists themselves. Even though the paintings itself worth some value, but without potential buyers they would neither generate revenue to the artists nor the organisers. Some even commented harshly that the act is like throwing cash into the sea.

The debate over this issue has not being resolved, as the government have not take any action on this issue, whether the funding would be provided, or just a blank promise. Whatever decision is made by the government, they should take the future generation in consideration. Like I mentioned above, we do not want the future generation to lose in touch with our heritage arts, so I personally think that the government should think twice and act wisely to preserve the arts, and let the exhibitions of arts idea to be realised in Malaysia.

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