The answer is all of the above and more. The role of the artist in society is an important one and is often misquoted, misunderstood or even dismissed as a role that is not needed. Artists give the world a viewpoint that maybe has not been expressed in the popular domain, one that can summarise a collective standpoint on a topic or even disregard entire political movements.
Creativity should always be nurtured and celebrated. The role of an artist is too often seen as a noble but insufficient role in society because of the tangible or monetary outcomes are small. However to refute this I would offer that when want escapism where do we turn to? We often turn to films, music, theatre. Where do we turn to for commentary on our society? Videos, documentaries, art. In order to preserve and nurture artists, we need to celebrate the artists in the public domain. Thanks to the mobile led social revolution, we are gifted more platforms than ever before to follow our favourite artists across any platform at any time. Artists are the lifeblood of our lives , they are engrained in day to day activities. Imagine a life with our artists in life, what would that look like?
In 2017, more than ever the role of the artist is to be a gatekeeper of freedom, to be able to roam free, to present and facilitate discussions that are happening to us today. An artist is not simply a painter or a designer or a filmmaker. It is easy to label artists in one corner and say they do one thing but as society changes the role of the artist has to change. The critical commentary, escapism, reflections and rebellion artists deliver provide an essential ingredient to our ever growing and ever developing society.
Manifesto, starring Academy Award winner Cate Blanchette, pays homage to the moving tradition and literary beauty of artistic manifestos, ultimately questioning the role of the artist in society today.
Manifesto is showing from Saturday 25 November, book your tickets now.