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PROBLEMS AND PROSPECT OF MANAGING PUBLIC ARTS INSTITUTION IN NIGERIA (A STUDY FOR EDO STATE ART AND CULTURE)
This paper examines problems and prospects of managing public arts institution in Nigeria using Edo state art and culture as a case study. This is with a view to determining the extent to which these policies have affected the growth and development of art and culture in the state. In carrying out this assessment, the activities of Edo State Council for Arts and Culture will be examined being the agency charged with cultural management in the state. It is against this backdrop that this paper highlights the management problems and suggests possible solutions towards achieving improved performance in the years ahead.
1.1 BACKGROUN OF THE STUDY
Nwamuo (2003) defined arts management as “a continuous process of making present artistic and entrepreneurial (risk taking) decision, systematically with the best possible knowledge of their futurity and organizing the efforts needed against the box office expectation through an organized systematic feedback”. According to Derrick Chong (2002), Art management is a more complex term than one first imagines: art mangers need to reconcile managerial, economic and aesthetic objectives. Three comments to excellence and artistic integrity; to accessibility and audience development; and to public accountability and cost effectiveness. For art and art organizations to experience growth and development, a conscious deliberate effort ought to be made towards harnessing resources to create enabling environment for success (Enamhe, 2012) such could be rendered in qualitative education where constant change occurs through critical thinking, reflection and action. The 21st century is very competitive in search of the fundamentals of life. All sectors of the economy are undergoing transformation processes. Artists should understand that expertise in any field offers students the opportunity of helping to anticipate and respond to changes. Students learn that, though a job may be successfully accomplished today by performing certain task, tomorrow entirely new set of skills may be required and because businesses are always changing, workers need to find out ways of doing a given job (Bettina, 1991).
The introduction of art management in the visual arts department will increase productivity in the manner that will promote the harnessing of diverse ideas, knowledge, expertise, experiences and skills which ought to effect effective and efficient resources management development as well as scientific and technological breakthrough (Ekong, 2008).
Art management has been used effectively for the advancement of art, art organizations and artists in advanced countries. In essence, in the third world countries, art management has a vital role to play in building up the visual arts. Following the progressive nature of advancement in technology, such as global telecommunication infrastructure, all due to globalization, artists must become very aggressive to stay on board. This paper tries to define arts management, visual arts, the need for art management in Visual Arts Department, fundamental elements in arts management, proposed course curriculum, conclusion and recommendations. Illustrations of students’ works are included to increase visual sensitivity. Eyes will perceive visual information expelled to create necessary curiosity, a fundamental element to art appreciation.
The Edo State Council for Arts and Culture was provisionally established in April, 1972 and remained in that capacity until it was reconstituted by Edict No. I of 1973. The Edict entitled “Midwest Arts Council Edict” is applicable to Edo State of Nigeria. In conformity with government’s implementation strategy of promoting, preserving and presenting the rich cultural heritage of the state, the council was established as an autonomous body administered by a Board of Directors referred to as the “Council.” The Edict vested the day-to-day management of the council in the Director of Culture who is also the Chief Executive. The enabling law provides for the constitution of local government arts committees responsible for organizing cultural activities in the local
government areas of the state.
As a way of foregrounding this discourse, it would be profiting to attempt a clarification of certain operative terms. In this regard, art refers to “all the creative disciplines such as literature, drama, poetry, dance, music and visual arts. The visual arts are those artistic creativities that seek to communicate primarily through the eye; they include architecture, graphics and textile design, etc” (Ohangbon, 1980).
The Nigerian Cultural Policy (1986) defines culture “as the totality of the way of life evolved by a people in its environment the social, political, economic, aesthetic and religious norms and modes of organization which together distinguish a people from its neighbours”. It comprises the material, institutional, philosophical and creative aspects. Its material aspects deal with tools, clothing, food, medicines, utensils, housing, etc. Its
institutional aspects deal with political, social, legal and economic structures enacted to promote the material and spiritual progress of the people concerned. Its philosophical aspect promotes and develops ideas, ideals, beliefs and values while the creative aspects are responsible for the people’s literature, their visual and performing arts which are normally moulded by, as well as help to mould other aspects of culture. According to Webster’s New World Dictionary of the American Language, culture refers to:
i. The improvement, refinement of development by study, training, etc.
ii. The training and refining of the mind, emotions, manners, taste, etc.
iii. The result of this refinement of thought, emotions, manners, taste, etc.
iv. The concepts, habits, skills, arts, instrument, institutions, etc, of a given people in a given period; civilization (Guranik and Joseph, 1964).
Akerele in his article entitled “Cultural Renewal in a Changing Society like Nigeria,” summarizes the essence of culture “as the development and refinement of the various aspects of the ways of life of a people over time”. He simplifies it further “as the totality of a people’s way of life (1980). The foregoing definitions are very apt, illuminating and enlightening and would suffice for the purpose of this study.
1.2 STATE OF THE PROBLEM
Some respondents fear that current political and severe economic pressures will result in a situation where the cultural and artistic panorama might be difficult to reconstruct. The lack of proper funding results in „a frenetic system of people working when they have funds and not when the money runs out.
Respondents expressed concern about a situation where the funding might only come from the private sector, which leads to problems of accessibility to the arts outside big cities and to the reinforcement of solely commercial activities. They are also concerned about the public‟s inability to understand the benefits of arts support. Respondents reported that the loss of public interest in public arts management may favour local and private initiatives but at the same time there is a clear disengagement of local and regional authorities from cultural activities that are not compulsory. This leads to a scenario where arts and culture become the domain of a select group of arts administrators and „not a matter to be discussed along with public welfare, well-being, educational success and thriving economies‟.
For some, one the biggest threats was simply the government and its policies. Some of the respondents referred to upcoming elections and their impact on the continuity of programs and funding and changing priorities especially if „policies come in narrow form’. Other government policy downfalls were the instrumentalisation of culture, the lack of protection and preservation and the enormous dependence of the cultural sector on public funding.
1.3 OBJECTIVE OF THE STUDY
1. To examine public art institutions in Nigeria.
2. To the strategies for the management public art institutions in Nigeria particularly Edo state.
3. To find out the problems of managing art institutions in Nigeria and Edo state.
4. To examine the prospects of managing public art institution in Edo state
1.4 RESEARCH QUESTION
1. How is public art institutions in Nigeria?
2. What are the strategies for the management art institutions in Nigeria particularly Edo state?
3. What are the problems involve in the management of public art institutions in Nigeria and Edo state?
4. What are the prospects of managing public art institution in Edo state?
1.5 RESEARCH QUESTION
H0: There are no strategies for the management art institutions in Nigeria particularly Edo state.
H1: There are strategies for the management art institutions in Nigeria particularly Edo state.
H0: The minor problems involve in the management of public art institutions in Nigeria and Edo state is structures?
H1: The major problems involve in the management of public art institutions in Nigeria and Edo state is funding?
1.6 SCOPE OF THE STUDY
This research work is problems and prospects of managing public arts institution in Nigeria using Edo state art and culture as a case study..
1.7 LIMITATION OF STUDY
Despite the limited scope of this study certain constraints were encountered during the research of this project. Some of the constraints experienced by the researcher were given below:
i. Time: This was a major constraint on the researcher during the period of the work. Considering the limited time given for this study, there was not much time to give this research the needed attention.
ii. Finance: Owing to the financial difficulty prevalent in the country and it’s resultant prices of commodities, transportation fares, research materials etc. The researcher did not find it easy meeting all his financial obligations.
iii. Information Constraints: Nigerian researchers have never had it easy when it comes to obtaining necessary information relevant to their area of study from private business organization and even government agencies. People in Nigeria find it difficult to reveal their internal operations. The primary information was collected through face-to-face interview getting the published materials on this topic meant going from one library to other which was not easy.
1.8 DEFINITION OF TERMS
Art Institution : An art school is an educational institution with a primary focus on the visual arts, especially illustration, painting, photography, sculpture, and graphic design.
Art Management: Art management is a business oriented discipline involved in project management, art strategy and supply chain techniques to control a creative process.
Visual Arts : The meaning of Visual Arts: Egonwa (2012) opines that, “visual arts are about visual culture in our time.
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