Operating grants: tradition and innovation in the arts

Tradition and innovation, a contradiction, right? Not necessarily. At an artistic level, the two go hand in hand. And at a business level too there is a traditional side to all innovation. Tradition and innovation: the parallels are actually quite logical. Use them to do your own artistic thing.

Artistic content

Tradition. That’s repertoire, mastery, technique, metier. And cultural heritage. Place art from the past in the spotlight and a whole new meaning emerges. And you don’t have to limit yourself to reference works. Perhaps lesser-known traditions are also worth rediscovering. 

Innovation. That’s innovative imagery and content. And: new and/or digital technology. This is possible and allowed in each discipline, for each position. The aim is to “create added value for the Flemish and international arts landscape”. 

The minister also refers to the interaction between tradition and innovation. Reinterpretation is a form of innovation.  Feel free to adapt iconic work, from fine art to classical music. Bring historical sources to life. Experiment and criticize. Because, according to the minister, if you start from what artists have already done before, you take your audience – via the familiar – to something new. It keeps reference works alive, adds an extra layer of meaning and brings different generations together.

Business-organisational aspects

The emphasis here is of course mainly on innovation. Think of innovative practices, working models and partnerships inside and outside the sector. The minister believes in the added value of collaboration, while preserving artistic autonomy. “Collaborations can be levers for new projects, create additional dynamics and offer innovative perspectives.” The minister even cites a number of (European) subsidy regulations that treat experimental collaborations. Call us for more info. 

And yes. Even in the area of business, innovation also has a link with tradition. Organisations that aim to reinterpret, actualise or critique iconic works… need access to a good archive. One of the challenges is to keep the legacy of our contemporary artists alive.


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