Government spends nearly £100,000 on art for Downing Street https://t.co/4Z21hqxzy3
— The Independent (@Independent) August 8, 2021
Yes indeed: an organisation called the Government Art Collection fund has spent nearly £100,000 of our money on two sets of artwork, because boosting the amount of valuable art available for Tory ministers’ enjoyment is more important to them than protecting the people of the UK.
A unnamed painting by Belfast-born artist Cathy Wilkes was purchased for £70,200. The 24×28 inch piece – bought from the Xavier Hufkens gallery in Brussels – is a washy blend of muted pink, turquoise and green “egg tempera on linen”.
Ew. No doubt it’s meant for a ‘select audience’.
A set of four black-and-white photo prints of vegetation and their shadows called ‘Ashen, Restless,’ by photographer Willie Doherty was bought for £18,775 – from the Kerlin Gallery in Dublin – to also go on display at 11 Downing Street.
Apparently some of the money came from “philanthropic donors” – to whom? To the government of the UK – whichever party leads it? Or to the Conservative Party? Who actually gets to possess these artworks?
Meanwhile, Tory prime minister Boris Johnson is getting ready to swipe £20 per week from Universal Credit claimants, while insulting NHS nurses with a derisory three per cent pay increase. The effect is predictable:
This is incendiary. 100k on paintings, kids going hungry.
Whether the BBC/papers report this is a litmus test for just how involved the govt. are in the press.
No scrutiny? You’ll know the Tories have total control. Wait and see.
— Super Tanskiii (@supertanskiii) August 8, 2021
Hmm – good point, there. A quick glance at the BBC Politics web page shows a story about David Cameron getting millions of pounds from that company he lobbied the government about, four pieces about climate change, Dido Harding quitting NHS Improvement, and a campaign to save an alpaca.
At least it has been reported by the Independent and the Mirror. I wonder how many other papers have picked up on this, though.
The bottom line is that £100,000 is not a lot of money to split between millions of people who are in need.
But it isn’t the only money the Tories have splashed around on themselves while others go without.
It all reminds me of the situation in France under Louis XVI – justifying the uncomplimentary characterisation of Johnson’s wife as “Carrie Antoinette”.
To paraphrase the historical personality on which it is based, though, how much grass* do we have to eat before the people are pushed to revolution?
*Marie Antoinette was supposed to have said, “Let them eat cake,” in reference to the poor – but in fact she said, “Let them eat grass”. I’m happy to clear that up.
Have YOU donated to my crowdfunding appeal, raising funds to fight false libel claims by TV celebrities who should know better? These court cases cost a lot of money so every penny will help ensure that wealth doesn’t beat justice.
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