Artists should think of ways to diversify and widen the reach of their art products so that they can benefit the ‘bottom billion.’

Prof. Susie See Ching Mey, the Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Industry and Community Network), Universiti Sains Malaysia said that the perception that art is exclusive domain of those who understand this field has to be changed. This is because in this global world, art has to reach all segments of society.

“We have to start thinking about how the art world can reach out to society and more importantly, help the ‘bottom billions’. This can be done through the production of certain art works that can be conceptualised in philosophy, visual products, policies or ideas aimed at improving the quality of life,” she said in her speech during the launching of International Conference on Performing Arts as Creative Industries in Asia, PACIA 2011 at Dewan Budaya.

She added that in an internet-based world, the world of art no longer belongs to one academic discipline but rather has to cut across other disciplines that are rarely related to art and aesthetics.

This trans-disciplinary idea has to be considered seriously by writers, intellectuals, artists, designers, directors, scholars and art practitioners because art in a global world must explore new areas that have potential for growth,” she stressed.

Organized by the School of Arts, USM, PACIA 2010 is a platform to discuss the growth and development of performing arts as a creative industry that can contribute towards national development.

According to Dr. A.S. Hardy Shafii, who is also the Chairman of PACIA, more than 200 participants from Australia, Poland, India, Indonesia, Hong Kong, Egypt and Malaysia attended the conference. The two-day conference also analysed new forms of art, the continuity between performing arts and creative arts that involve fashion, architecture, fine arts, film, music, advertisement, television, radio as well as international creative writing genres.

More than 50 papers were presented at the conference and two well-known figures, Prof. David Knight from Middlesex University, United Kingdom and art theatre buff, Dato’ Faridah Merican also shared their experiences through keynote addresses at the conference.

Published: 01 Apr 2011

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