by • 26 Jul, 2011 • Thoughts about museumsComments (5)4822

Promoting culture

30 Days of Gratitude- Day 29
Photo by Louise Docker on Flickr

Culture suffers from an ever worse image, at least in the Netherlands. Culture, almost, has become a dirty word. When a couple of months ago it became apparent that culture in the Netherlands would be severely cut, the response was a countrywide scream for culture. Like, people really screaming for culture… I believe that’s about the worst thing you can do to promote culture.

This morning, a post by Susan Cairns had me notice a wonderful video about the Ship Song Project of the Sydney Opera House. Watch it, it’s astonishing.

Rather than screaming, this video focuses on the intrinsic strengths of culture, the arts. It sells what culture has to offer: passion, emotion, inspiration, the dumbfounding feeling of witnessing something truly unique. This is what culture is all about. This is why culture is important!

I like to say there’s nothing easier to promote than culture, the arts. Unlike fastfood or cheap airline tickets, culture is a high-value product meaningful to nearly everybody. We only have to show it in its full strength. Then, we don’t have to scream. All we have to do is whisper.

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  • Anonymous

    The backstory to the advertisement is here –

    The promotion going on here is all about ‘repositioning’ the SOH as something relevant to contemporary culture and younger audiences. 

  • Hi Seb, thanks! Also, like the discussion unrolling at Suse’s original post.

  • Anonymous

    Ha! Don’t discount the fact that this is a highly iconic, globally known brand and venue that is also in a fabulously photogenic harbour location. Think more Empire State Building than even Tate Modern. It shouldn’t exactly struggle to do this sort of thing.

  • Of course it is, and they’ll (maybe) have it easier than the average independent venue in a backstreet in a minor town. However, the movie had made me want to go before it was obvious it was about such a well known venue.

    I’m not saying everybody should spend millions on promotion like this. All I’m saying is that in promoting culture, the most valuable asset is already there: it’s the culture itself.

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