“Mofetta lacks vision, function and management models”

“Let us not be confused: in Molfetta, the theme of culture is not a theme about containers, but about content. It is not the structures that are missing, it is not the emergency. Rather, there is a lack of vision, function, management models.

As long as culture remains a tool to delight friends, loyal practitioners and potential voters, we will never go beyond our noses. Not even Pinocchio’s protein names will help get far. With this decadent and provincial mentality, the municipal coffers will continue to dry out, primarily due to a myriad of small mosquito incidents, accompanied by some costly recall event. For a fee. In short, a big rapprochement party.

So, just to blow a little smoke in the face, we are talking about the construction of large theaters (how many performances a year? With what organic audience?). You are navigating on sight. Just think that Molfetta Municipality is not even aware of its artistic and architectural heritage: We do not have a single database of works (especially paintings), structures, systems and equipment in our city.

We keep the cement mixes in check, and rather we think of a qualified cultural office that is not only able to call artists from a politician’s private agenda, but to successfully participate in European calls and projects, or MiC or to collaborate profitably with regional cultural agencies. In short, put ourselves in the great cultural circles and invest in our valuable identities. “

This is how Corrado Minervini, candidate for the City Council for Rebirth in support of Lillino Drago’s Mayor of Molfetta, intervenes on the theme of cultural policy.

“Many administrators are convinced that the policies of the last century are adequate for all geological ages. This is not the case. Today, a department dealing with culture in a municipality with over fifty thousand inhabitants requires administrative and organizational skills that are not was forty years ago. We see it, for example, from the municipal budgets. We are used to reading commitments of hundreds of thousands of euros to implement our summer and winter “cultural programs” (even in recent years, despite the pandemic). common, even for events with ticket sales and important sponsors.

Here we begin to make a first distinction. There are cultural proposals of varying depth and ambitions. The amateur theater, the parish party, the dance concert, the novice band’s concertino are expressions of an important ferment for a community, but they cannot be the center of cultural policy. Their function is about something to educate and train a sensitive public. And then to launch artists and organizers who from amateurs gradually become professionals. An indispensable human heritage to take a qualitative leap both in demand and in the supply of culture. But then we also have to breathe another air, to open up for non-local artistic experiences. Molfetta is in Europe, it is not a republic in itself.

But that’s not all. If the famous municipal “contributions” are given according to the right principle of subsidiarity in the achievement of public purposes, the municipality, on the other hand, must select the activities that actually generate a cultural and social value for the territory. The selection can take place in different ways, but the one we are used to is probably wrong: That “suggestion, then we shall see” is not good. On the contrary, it would be interesting to define targeted efforts (goals and neighborhoods) or programs that follow a clear vision. For example, cultural programs located in the most peripheral neighborhoods – with social aims and the fight against educational poverty – or programs located in the center with the aim of strengthening the urban system. It’s not an aut or, but a well well. It must be done well, it must be thought well. This is the work of politics.

There is more. A city should build and promote its own cultural identity both for its citizens and in the position that society holds in external tourist and cultural circles. In Molfetta, cultural tourism and proximity tourism are possible. I say this with conviction. To do this, however, it is necessary to have very clear ideas. What does Molfetta have to promote? Each will respond with a list of small gems, separated from each other. We must transform these beauties, our historical-architectural heritage, the landscape heritage, the city’s excellence into valuable travel plans set up in an identifiable framework.

Let’s take some examples. The road of the sea (with which the history of our city is inextricably linked); the prehistoric, the Apulian Romanesque, the deserved personalities (Gaetano Salvemini and Corrado Giaquinto, just to name a few), the holy week’s road, food and wine tours and so on.

Each of these trails must be able to tell a piece of beauty and create a system of local opportunities and services. If all gears turned in the right direction, Molfetta would have a much more flourishing, attractive and functional “cultural sector” for the harmonious development of our city. What is often overlooked, in fact, is that culture can create jobs. Whether we are talking about artistic languages ​​(artists, set designers, filmmakers, event organizers, local staff and so on), or whether we are talking about places of historical and architectural interest. Culture generates a significant induced, which studies, works, designs, realizes to welcome citizens. And then again hospitality, catering, mobility, shopping, organizing events and so on.

Let’s try not to stop yet, let’s take another step forward. Do we really think that the French tourist in the morning, flipping through the atlas, decides to go on holiday to Molfetta? I do not think so: Molfetta is currently hosting transit tourism. How can the area’s attractiveness be increased from a tourist and cultural point of view? Here, too, the answer lies in intelligent collaboration. Molfetta must be inserted into a larger frame that embraces a large basin. We start from Giovinazzo, up to Barletta. Molfetta, that is, needs a “SLOT” (local system of territorial supply). But let’s go in order.

What will be more interesting for the French tourist, what will push him to get to Molfetta: Pulo di Molfetta, or a complete package, a structured itinerary that includes Pulo, the Archaeological Museum, the dinosaurs’ footsteps in the countryside and then the Jatta Museum in Ruvo and the Dolmen of Bisceglie? Here the answer is obvious. But building a trail of this kind is improvised tourist guide with any course not enough. We need competencies, studies, research, collaborations with universities. In short, Molfetta must come out of the provincialism it lives by.

Is it possible? Yes, that is possible.

I would like to end with two considerations. The first is that culture is not a tool in the hands of politics to buy consensus, attract operators, keep the people well. Culture is a tool for discernment. To read the world, assess it, represent it and if anything draw a different destiny for it. Ultimately, culture is a tool for building a collective identity, both in relation to art and in relation to places of cultural value and to an even greater extent in relation to the experiences that the community shares. It is worth investing in this invaluable legacy of mind, skills, riches and history.

The second is that it is worth ensuring that the artistic and cultural proposals that the city promotes are always aware of new talents and skills. Look for new artists, new protagonists, select them and help them in the complicated leap from amateur to professionalism. Maybe next to established artists, at the opening of a concert, in the foyer of an exhibition, on the blackboard for a cultural program. Therefore, to push the talents we have given birth to the most challenging and ambitious routes. Do not lock them inside the suffocation of the village parties.

And once again I ask myself: is it possible? Yes, that is possible.”

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