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Ineffable or just indefinable?

Neither the Arts Council nor Peter Hall's Shadow Arts Council can sort out art's identity crisis

By Ivan Hewett   May 1999

Into Britain’s fracas about the “dumbing-down” of the arts has ambled the ponderous figure of Peter Hall. Like a prophet of old, he comes to tear the veil of illusion from before our eyes. According to him there is no debate; the art world has simply acquiesced in the tide of accountancy-led philistinism emanating from the Culture Department and its satraps at the Arts Council. This curious idea was unveiled at the press launch of the Shadow Arts Council, whose role Hall insists is not to whinge, but to provide a platform for “argument, debate and noise.” Where has he…

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