Author: Marjorie Garber
The title of Garber’s book contains the crux of her proposal: though financially supported by foundations, corporations and wealthy individuals, the arts are also deemed nonessential. These two types of patronizing, Garber argues, have led to art’s simultaneous devaluation (as recreational) and overvaluation (as transcendent). Garber begins by uncovering the contradictions inherent in patronage: the word’s very origin is the Latin pater, father, and its connections to patriarchy, she says, are not coincidental. Garber traces the patron/artist relationship through the centuries and considers the new class of American Medicis in the private, government and corporate sectors. She concludes with a call for increased arts patronage by colleges and universities.
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