Renowned political satirist and author Martin Rowson captured the Culture Committeeâ€™s evidence session this week with Culture Minister, Ed Vaizey MP. Â Rowsonâ€™s portrayal of the committee seeks to remind the Government of the importance of keeping creators central to discussions on the UKâ€™s cultural and creative industries.
Rowson was working in support of a campaign by DACS to promote the value of artistsâ€™ rights, in particular the Artistâ€™s Resale Right which is due to be fully implemented in 2012.
This important Right pays a modest royalty to artists when their works are resold through auction houses, galleries and dealer and gives artists an ongoing stake in the commercial success of their work.
Rowsonâ€™s contribution responds to recent moves by some fringe groups in Europe to delay the full implementation, a move which risks harming the future of the creative economy at a time when public funding is being cut.
Martin Rowson said: â€œIt’s always a laugh for cartoonists to get out “into the field” and draw our victims from the life, particularly when they see the result and laugh in their turn, though usually through gritted teeth. But while Ed Vaizey’s performance in front of the Culture Select Committee was typically jovial and good-natured, ensuring the full implementation of Artist’s Resale Right is deadly serious for thousands of artists and their families.â€
A spokesperson for DACS said: â€œAs the Government reduces funding for the arts, it is more important than ever that the art community can support those that produce and restore the UKâ€™s cultural heritage, providing a foundation for the UKâ€™s creative economy. Â Martin Rowsonâ€™s sketch captures the committee as it battles with these issues.â€
â€œInheriting an artistâ€™s legacy brings with it a burden, including the need to store, preserve and restore original art works. Â The Artistâ€™s Resale Right provides a vital income stream for existing artists and full implementation will support the heirs and estates of deceased artists, preserving the UKâ€™s creative heritage.â€