Discuss Arts

On the last Arts page of the past semester, we ran a guest commentary on the role of dance at Harvard. This was our first such piece in a long time, and this semester we would like to redouble our efforts to include guest opinions on the arts from members of the Harvard community.

Ideally, The Crimson Arts page should be more than a detatched series of reviews. The page should also provide a forum for discussion of cultural issues and events at Harvard, a means by which readers can air their opinions on a wide variety of artistic topics. While some of the potential topics will undoubtably be serious, all of them need not be.

Should the government sponsor controversial exhibits and shows? Has the American Repertory Theater helped or hindered undergraduate drama? Does the fact that approximately 80 percent of the nudes at the Fogg Museum are female demean women? Do Harvard students perform too many Shakespeare plays and not enough Broadway musicals? We'd like your opinions.

To begin the year, we invite commentary on the role of the Harvard Art Museums. James Cuno, the new director of these museums, recently told the Harvard Arts Spectrum that he believes that Harvard museums should not be viewed "only in relation to a single department, the Department of Fine Arts, but as a university-wide catalyst for the study of the visual arts." Cuno added that he hoped "to regenerate the museums' commitment to contemporary art," arguing, "I don't think there's any pedagogical or intellectual justification for building a museum and developing its programs simply with art of the past."

We'd like to know what you think of Cuno's comments. What measures can be taken to better incorporate the Harvard Art Museums within the larger Harvard community? Do the museums spend too much time in the past? Submissions should be between one and two typed pages in length, and they should include the author's name and phone number. Please send to: Arts Editor, The Harvard Crimson, 14 Plympton St., Cambridge, Mass., 02138.


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