A Challenge to artists

It’s still inauguration week.  The shift has started.  We have a new president and a new administration coming in: President Barack Obama!

It’s a challenge to really do something right and have it stick.  It seems that those in power are taking this seriously.  There seems to be a “can do” attitude.  They seem to be “hitting the ground running.”

Then there’s the reference from an old depression era song written by Jerome Kern and Dorothy Fields made in the inaugural address:

“Starting today, we must pick ourselves up, dust ourselves off, and begin again the work of remaking America.”

The original song was: “So take a deep breath; Pick yourself up; Dust yourself off; Start all over again.”  Yes, face the music and dance.

It’s time for something new, maybe time for adventures.


What part artists can play in turning this nation (and this world) into better directions?  I’ve given this a lot of thought, over the years.

There’s plenty of room to grow,  plenty to repair, plenty to consider and plenty to do.

In these early days , I have two challenges which immediately come to mind:

1. As always, try to create the best work you can and to encourage and support your fellow artists.  Renaissance now!

A great resurgence of the arts would help inspire, inform, energize, enliven and  encourage our fellow humans.  I’m all about that (so to speak).

There’s much I could say, but I’ll save it for another time.

2. If we have a viable “people’s think tank”, the artists should get involved.  We may even have a vital part to play here.  We can offer different points of view and different approaches.

Every work of art faces and solves a series of problems and obstacles.  Often, the more successfully it solves or compensates for these problems, the more successful the work of art.  (Of course, there’s also an “x factor” or “wild card” involved.  The matter of what’s good art, what’s bad and what’s in-between is usually up for debate).

Some artists are experts at solving problems.  They do so in there art all the time and sometimes even in their lives.  If some of us also have a deep and complex understanding of “reality” or life as it is we may be able to come up with some good ideas.

Successfully implemented, a “people’s think tank” would be another form of volunteerism.  Try to state your observations or suggestions as best you can.  Not everyone’s a writer, but try to communicate in clear and simple language.  Try to get your main ideas across as briefly as possible.

If they have a “channel” for taking in these ideas, it could make it easier to do so.  In the mean time, there’s always postal letters and emails.

It would be great if they could have someone who goes through all the suggestions, ideas, and possible solutions to to problems.  Then they could show the best, more promising ones to the president and/or his inner circle.  It could be like panning for gold.  Let’s utilize all our resources, including ourselves.

(Maurice Greenia, Jr. / January 24, 2009)


the new White House site:


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