Don't Believe the PD, there is no arts and culture in Westlake

Submitted by Evelyn Kiefer on Wed, 09/13/2006 - 20:53.

And I would know, I grew up there. Only the developers of Crocker Park and such -- and their supporters -- would pretend this sculpture represents real art and culture in Westlake. Promoting it as such is part of an insidious plot I see developing. See the PD article Monday September 11th. The abstract stainless steel sculpture by Balazs is definitely an anomaly in Westlake. Westlake should be very proud to have had some hand in producing a nationally acclaimed sculptor, and at $30,000, I think they got a good deal, too. See the article on the dedication in the Westlife newspaper.
I think most people in Westlake know real culture belongs in the City -- Cleveland. The majority of NEO Arts money and energy should be spent on Cleveland. Sure, move the Beck Center to Crocker Park -- what next ? Severence Hall? the Cleveland Museum of Art?  Don't pretend there is art and culture in the suburbs and use it as an excuse for your long commuting, polluting lifestyle.
Don't get me wrong. Westlake is a beautiful suburb (it was a lot more attractive before all the old farms became developments of McMansions and "lifestyle center" malls. Some of Westlake's greatest assets are its gardens (private gardens and the community gardens along Hilliard Road), the lovely well- cared for century homes and the historical society (which needs some political power).

If you are from Westlake, or have an opinion on the role of art in the suburbs PLEASE POST!

Gund says they can't afford replicating arts in burbs...

I think the core observation on this issue come's from the Gund Foundation, which I posted as a comment on the matter when the whole Beck Center issue was raised months ago:

"At the bottom of this fundamentally is the issue of sprawl," says George Gund Foundation Arts program officer Deena Epstein, talking about the situation.

"We have invested in organizations in the core city and the inner ring," she continued. "We can't afford to replicate those farther out in the suburbs, nor should we."

Either a bunch of sub and x-urban PD writers and editors are trying to make themselves feel good about living in the boodocks or they are under political pressure from all the big shots who promote sprawl to rally around their financial need to get traction for the developments they've created, which no self-respecting GEN-X, new economy folks will want...  they are in fact just glorified baby-bust retirement communities for the dying end of our regional life-cycle. Don't let them all screw the next generations and destroy our core cltural assets.