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12th June, 2008

Culture and Consequence

Event Details

12th June, 2008
Edmund J Safra Lecture Theatre, Strand Campus, Kings College London

How can the creative industries use their economic pulling-power to change society for the better? What kinds of values should the arts represent? Is art a kind of social activism? How can culture mediate in conflict and is there a place for artists in war zones?

These are just some of the far-reaching questions that will be debated at Culture and Consequence – a major conference for cultural leaders, academics and artists on the role of ethics in the arts produced by the London Centre for Arts and Cultural Enterprise (LCACE) in partnership with the Cultural Leadership Programme.

The one-day conference, which will be chaired by Zina Saro-Wiwa, will start with keynote speeches from Jude Kelly, Artistic Drector of the Southbank Centre, Baroness Susan Greenfield and Dr Robert Beckford.

Jude Kelly will argue that now the creative and cultural industries have come of age and are widely recognised as a major contributer to the UK economy, they should use their ‘place at the table’ to explore ways to build a better society and to be thought-leaders on issues such as social and physical regeneration.

Neuroscientist Susan Greenfield will explore how new influences in the 21st century such as gaming may be having an unprecedented impact on our minds and our ability to engage with more traditional forms of culture such as literature and theatre.

In his presentation ‘Reel to Real’, Channel 4 presenter Dr Robert Beckford will examine the way that religious documentary filmmaking can transform lives and bring about social change.

Matthew Taylor, Chief Executive of the Royal Society for the encouragement of Arts, Manufactures and Commerce and former Chief Adviser on Political Strategy to the Prime Minister, will give the final keynote speech of the day.

A number of other artists and academics are taking part in workshops:

Artist David Cotterrell, who has just returned from Kabul in Afghanistan to carry out research for newly-commissioned art works in the UK, will ask how art can create sacred space and places for communal experience.

Sir Richard Dalton, former UK Ambassador to Iran, and composer Professor Nigel Osborne, who uses music therapy to treat victims of conflict, will offer strongly opposing views on whether there is a role for the arts and culture in conflict resolution and uniting the faiths.

Renowned economist and creative industry policy expert Hasan Bakhshi from NESTA (the National Endowment for Science, Technology and the Arts) will lead a discussion about the impact of profit and wealth on the arts.

Choreographer and hip hop theatre artist Jonzi D, who has used dance to inspire and educate young people, will be amongst a group debating the role of artists as ‘prophets’ and their social and moral responsibilities.

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