11+ Reasons to value the arts

So, the Australian Federal Government has abolished the Department of Communications and the Arts. It will be merged into one called the Department of Transport, Infrastructure, Regional Development and Communications.

I mean… what?

“Arts” isn’t even in the name of the new department, and communications are now supposed to be managed by the same people managing transport and infrastructure?

Well, I just wanna say that this little voice actor from country New South Wales thinks the Arts deserve better.

The arts are not just a bunch of frivolous, whimsical things that people do in their spare time. Entertainment is not just a time-filler. Arts and entertainment are IMPORTANT. They are just as worthy of resources as other industries and other parts of the economic makeup of a society.

I want to re-state that: art can be whimsical, frivolous, absurd, shallow, playful, childish… this does not make it less valuable. What would life be without any of those things?

How different would communication be without art?

Instead of whining, I’m making a list of the reasons that arts and entertainment are important in any life. Please comment with additions to my list!

  1. Arts help us communicate culture to others – and learn about other cultures too.
  2. Making art helps us express our emotions and needs – which can be hard to do in words!
  3. Witnessing beautiful art soothes bad moods, agitation, upset, depression, anxiety and more (dopamine is released in the body, gotta love that!)
  4. Learning art and craft teaches skills that are useful in many of life’s other needs.
  5. Creativity is good for the brain (studies show crafting has effects similar to meditation). Playing music, in particular, improves your right-and-left-brain connectivity.
  6. Making art builds self-esteem – particularly performing arts.
  7. Arts teach us collaboration and communication skills.
  8. Entertainment helps us to soothe our tired or sore bodies (yes, putting your feet up and watching a movie after work is a good thing!).
  9. Art can provide a focus that feels good when other parts of life feel difficult.
  10. Art simply makes some of our environment nicer to look at and spend time in! (Think of how much energy goes into choosing artworks for hospitals, hotels, public spaces etc.)
  11. Participating in art/craft/entertainment projects builds relationships. This adds immeasurable joy to the world. It just does.

Yay arts! Yay acting! Yay voice actors, scriptwriters, painters, musicians, crafters, all of us!

Images by @mppllc, @criene, and @wanaktek via Twenty20

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