All Power to the Imagination

Sunita Prasad Jan 21, 2013

Sunita Prasad
National Endowment for the Arts

Re-instate grants to artists. 501(c)(3) status will no longer be a requirement to access public funds for creating culture. The arts are one of the last (and quickly dwindling) fringes of rote professionalization, and funding will support continued experimentation in the contours of creative life.

Definitively lift all content restrictions on funding, whether explicit or tacit. Content restrictions run counter to the First Amendment. Artists cannot create a diverse dialogue that enriches our culture under conditions of censorship. Art is not meant to advance a singular point of view, particularly not one that is heterosexist, racist, and misogynistic, such as the one that led to the introduction of the content restrictions idea and near dissolution of the NEA 20 years ago.

Up the percent of the one percent. In the age of record prices in a rarefied but over-exposed corner of the art market, the NEA recommends a tax of 50 percent on all art sales of $50,000 or greater. This revenue is to be earmarked to fund co-operatively run exhibitions, performances, and public art projects, as well as healthcare for cultural workers.

All Power to the Imagination.

Sunita Prasad is a New York City artist. She was a member of the now-defunct radical cultural collective Red Channels, which invaded the Paris Commune restaurant in New York City, delivered giant “radioactive” paper cranes to the General Electric corporation and gave walking tours of New York on topics such as the prisons in Manhattan and wildcat strikes in local history.

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