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The power of prizes

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Tuesday, Oct 24, 2006

A stalwart article in the Guardian about prizes and the arts: And the Winner Is?. Jason Cowley examines the system of awards in the UK arts, extending not just to music but also literature. And what do the prizes provide the winners? Fame, recognition, money, opportunities- you know, all the crass things that a real artist isn’t supposed to be concerned with. And surprise, surprise- many of the similarities between the arts are that merit doesn’t always drive the decision- there’s a lot of politics involved, even in the ‘fine’ arts. It also provides some comfort for anyone not anointed by this committee or that society. Hey, you can toil away in ongoing obscurity with thousands of others!

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