Concluding discussion

On Quality and Reflection in Culture and Media

Selimovic (Sweden)
There are four groups that decide about the
Quality in art: Audience, employees, artists and the critics. Dependently on
what group gets to decide you get a different sort of quality. 

We have also talked about:

  • Audience defined quality – how many are using this art product? This is the
    most democratic set up and it doesn’t need to be bad.
  • Product defined quality – it has to be good – it doesn’t matter if anyone
    wants or uses it. But we cannot do it without time.
  • Transcendental quality; (Plato): high standard of excellence that only can
    be recognised in the light of long practice.
  • Branded quality – who is making something good? It’ is all about building

In private theatres no one is interested in the artists, and no one cares
about reviews and the critics. That leaves the quality decision-making to the

We need time and resources.  Quality is often defined by how big the
number of the audience is – this is the most democratic notion of quality.

Then there is the form of transcendental quality. Quality should be
objective. Quality is a high standard of excellence and can only be recognised
in the light of long practise. The importance of quality must be pointed out but
quality is not a goal in itself.

It’s an instrument of doing something
else. It’s an instrument for improving democracy. It’s important for social and
political awareness of EU. The EU is currently in and enlarging process,
creating a Europe of Europeans. It is promoting a European identity,
transparency, efficiency and trust in democracy.

Comments from the audience after the summary:

concern is that we shouldn’t sound like we think quality is something of the
passed. Internet as an example should not be seen as a fret. Recognition of
quality is important and this takes time to learn.  – Alexis

We must also be aware of the difference between the passive way of emotion
versus the active way of feeling. – Miha Pogacnik

… and invite polarities rather then softening them. We need polarities to
energize our work. – Paolo Naldini

Yes, I don’t like third ways! I like intellectual battle and I’m all for a
social elitist – for those arguing the quality of art. But don’t avoid
disagreement! Even here, within the ECP, we are not really prepared to fight
among ourselves. – Claire Fox

Final Conclusion:
Karl-Erik Norrman

The new
global situation creates crises in media. We have reason to be worried and to
stand up in defence of quality, both in culture and in media. If we are striving
for a democratic world we should encourage the 7 billion world population to be
quality conscious. This year we therefore dedicated the theme of our session to
quality –
“Quality and Reflection in Culture and Media – Prerequisites for
European Democracy”

Quality is not a goal in itself; it’s an instrument of improving


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