Thank God it’s Friday

Posted on March 20, 2015

“Art has the ability to unite people into a collective mind”

Thoughts by magician David Copperfield

Dear Colleagues around the world,

Earlier this month an opinion piece by entertainer-magician David Copperfield in The New York Times entitled “The Power of Magical Thinking” grabbed my attention; I shared it on Twitter and Facebook.

As many journalists, thinkers and artists have, Mr. Copperfield reflected on the terrorist attack on the editorial team of French satire magazine “Charlie Hebdo”. His reflections are set in in a wider context with freedom of speech and the diversity of our religions and societies. Mr. Copperfield speaks about the ability of art and artists to unite audiences: “My fellow artists and I are here to create, if only for an hour or two, a concord among every member of the audience. Art has the ability to unite people into a collective mind. That’s the real magic, what those in the hate business can’t countenance.”

I think this week, all of us working in the arts and exhibitions business are somehow disturbed and very sad about the assassination that happened at the National Museum in Tunisia’s capital, Tunis. It could be any museum in the world.

“Meanwhile, those of us in the entertainment business have a duty to vanish the idea that there’s an “us” and a “them.” When audiences unite in joy and wonder, you realize that the key isn’t the suspension of disbelief, but the suspension of divisive beliefs. If it can happen for 90 minutes during my show, it can happen forever.”, says David Copperfield. Indeed, let us think of our duties as people working in the entertainment business – whether we are involved in a show by an entertainer like David Copperfield, or a new exhibition, or a book, a film or a podcast. I read his piece again, and I invite you to read it as well: www.nytimes.com/….

Our thoughts are with our colleagues in the National Museum in Tunis, the victims and their families.



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