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How will the arts and culture industry develop in 2014?
[Festivals] How will the arts and culture industry develop in 2014?
Writer : Kim Hye-in_Korea Culture and Tourism Institute 2014.02.11 Asia > Korea

How will the arts and culture industry develop in 2014?
[Trends] 2014 Arts and Culture Trends Analysis and Forecast


2014 Arts and Culture Trends

1. Lighthearted and comfortable enjoyment—the rise of "snack culture"
2. Strategic targeting: TV with a focus on the individual
3. Arts and culture as a lifestyle of sharing and cooperation
4. The growth engine of the arts and culture industry is people: nurturing professionals in earnest
5. Dismantling the top-down hierarchy of the arts and culture industry
6. History becoming a story: the rediscovery of cultural legacies
7. The potential of teenagers in the digital age
8. Companies sharing the values of arts and culture
9. The humanities craze: refocusing on the essence of humanity
10. "Culture" emerging as a new government policy keyword

This year, without fail, as we see new research on the "2014 Arts and Culture Trends Analysis and Forecast," we are also asking more questions about the trends that will emerge in the arts and culture industry duringthe upcoming year. This can be attributed to the fact that interest in the trends of the industry will lead to a better understanding of "preferences" and thus lead to consumption. If so, then what explains the continued interest in arts and culture trends in the arts and culture industry? It’s possible to surmise that, by examining the demands and the changes arising from the most active elements within the industries, amongstthe many elements that comprise the arts and culture industries, we can discover what these changes signify for us.

When we recall that "healing" was a trend word last year, amid the effect of overall social unrest, we can predict that the key words for 2014 will be "simplicity" and "modesty." From an analysis of the changes that affected the arts and culture industry and society overall during 2013, we can extract the following 10 major trends for the arts and culture industry for 2014. Let’stake a look at a few of these in greater detail.

Lighthearted and comfortable enjoyment—the rise of "snack culture"

As the term suggests, "snack culture" denotes culture that can be easily enjoyed in a short amount of time, muchlike a snack. First used in 2007 by US IT magazine Wired, the term emerged as a response to the trend of easily and quickly consumed media in the IT industry and beyond. It’s predicted that aspects of "snack culture" will affect developments in the creation and consumption of arts and culture,as well as in the culture of leisure activities. This rise of "snack culture" is attributed to the expansion of "smart culture" and a rise in the demand of people who want to enjoy leisure activities, the arts, and culture with relative ease and comfort -- all while spending less money and effort. As of April 2013, 94.2% of domestic smart phone users were seen to be using the mobile video features on their smart phones, and the figure demonstrates how users are making use of their time, however short, to access arts and cultural content. Smart phones have enabled users to make use of 10 or so minutes to read online novels and online cartoons, watch online TV dramas and the highlights of a recorded performance – or look at images of works of art.

When a major portal website such as Naver or Daum launches a new piece of mobile video content, the video in question can easily reach millions of hits within weeks. It’s also predictedthat there will be a stronger emphasis on one’s ability to now enjoy leisure activities with less money and less time. Instead of a marathon, which requires investing a longer amount of time, it will be about "trail running," or short-distance marathons on local trails, and "day camping" will enable people to enjoy the experience of camping during the week without setting aside an entire weekend. In such ways, future leisure culture will emphasize quick and easy activities, akin to snacking.

Strategic targeting: TV with a focus on the individual

caters to personal taste, society is increasingly focused on the "individual." In particular, the consistent rise in the number of one-person households (currently 25.3% of all households, and estimated to reach 35% by 2035) has called widespread attention to the need for more services for individuals. This is predicted to affect the TV industry in particular, among other industries in the field of arts and culture. The success of programs (Reply 1994, I Live Alone[Na Honja Sanda], Let’s Eat) that targeted such a viewership in 2013 clearly demonstrates this phenomenon. We can attribute the cause to the need for a quick response to the changing interests and lifestyle trends of a viewership through a diversification of TV channels. Technical developments such as smart TVs and hybrid TVs, which support the creation of individualized TV content through an analysis of viewing habits and preferences, are predicted to further exacerbate this trend. It is predicted that in this year TV will move further away from its role as a medium that creates shared experiences and brings families together, changing into something that offers a variety of content for individuals.

▲TvN TV dramas Reply 1994(left) and Let’s Eat(right)_tvN Drama Official Facebook

The growth engine of the arts and culture industry is people: nurturing professionals in earnest

The emphasis put on and the support given to the creators in arts and culture are predicted to expand, creatinga new focus on the various professionals that work in the arts and culture industry. There are also voices calling for support on a policy level as well as an expert system for nurturing the professionals who work as mediators and producers for the recognition of arts and culture, and for the communication of artwork. For examples,we can cite recent movements towards more professional training and support programs for curators, program coordinators, performance producers, arts and culture educators and government-endorsed culture consultants. We can also predict that there will be a greater movement towards one-person enterprises in the arts and culture. We can understand such enterprises as a way for young professionals in the arts and culture who want to work but cannot find waysto create their own work. Recently, such one-person enterprises are particularly noticeable in the arts-related service and publishing sectors, and such one-person enterprises have a lot of potential for development, as with lower break-even points compared to medium-sized or larger companies, they’re in an advantageous position for more novel productions, and can also provide services to fulfill the needs of various consumers, contributing to the further diversification of their markets.

Dismantling the top-down hierarchies of the arts and culture industry

Last year, as voices called for widespread socialreform of various unfair hierarchical structures within contracts, a full-blown debate on the reform of hierarchical structures in the arts also emerged. Of course, there have always been voices calling for reform, but the problem of unfair contracts has especially persisted in the arts — the practice of working without a contract, an atmosphere that doesn’t acknowledge that art is a type of labor, unreasonable labor and employment conditions, and the many connections based on personal connections from school, for example. In 2012, with the commencement of the welfare policy for those in the arts, and in the announcement of the Policy for the Construction of a Creative Safety Net for Artists in a top-level national policy meeting in July 2013, the government began committing more earnestly to the creation of a fairer environment in the arts, becoming an official policy goal as schemes to boost protection in contracts, copyrightsand other policies were rolled out. And through the amendment of the welfare law for professionals in the arts in December 2013, which paves the way for fines forunfair contracts signed by an appeal to rank or authority, unfair division of profits, wrongful interference in creative activities, wrongful use of personal information on artists, and more, it’s expected that onsite efforts to promote specific policies for the improvement of hierarchical contractor and subcontractor relationships in the arts will also improve.

History becoming a story: the rediscovery of cultural legacies

 

 

 

 

 

 

『Nanjung Ilgi』(War Diary of Admiral Yi Sun-sin)
 ◎ Source_Cultural Heritage Administration]

As countries compete to have aspects of their culture featured on the UNESCO World Heritage List, the intensifying competition demonstrates how cultural legacies are now recognized as competitive resources to benefit national culture and tourism. This is because being featured on the World Heritage List leads to greater recognition of the country or region in question, which in turn leans to increased tourism, increased employment opportunities and increased profitability. It’s possible to say that the popularity of travel products featuring explorations of various world cultural legacies reflects this. And the unique narrative value of cultural legacies can also be applied elsewhere in the arts and culture, tourism, content-based programs and more and high expectations of this will likely lead to a sustained effort to discover cultural legacies with a high potential for applicability, as well as ways to apply these legacies. Last year, historical records such as Nanjung Ilgi, or the Archives of Saemaul Undong, or even "intangible heritages" such as kimjang culture made it onto the UNESCO World Heritage list, and it seems as though interest in such cultural legacies will continue to grow.

"Culture" emerging as a new government policy keyword

After President Park Geun-hye and her administration identified cultural prosperity as one of the "Four Major Policy Areas" and announced 2% public finance for cultural affairs, last year there was a discernable increase in the attention paid to "culture" itself. Recognizing that "cultural development and prosperity" isnecessary to the happiness of the nation as well as to economic and social development, the movements to achieve these things on a national level engendered many debates about the related concepts and the scope of activity they would entail. And this year, along with the debate,it seems as though the policy-level support for cultural prosperity will continue in earnest. And as the "creative economy" emerges as a new paradigm of our era – further promoting imagination and creativity while emphasizing the potential socio-economic value to be found in "culture" and the "arts" – the debate is expected to continue on how the creation of socio-economic value, as regards the power of culture,will manifest. When one examines trends in the arts, it’s possible to see a segmentalization and modulization of related phenomena and issues. And in the past few years,as various methods developed to consume or possess the arts in culture amid increasing focus on the arts and culture, there has also been heightened concern formaintaining the integrity of the arts and culture ecosystem itself. Even in the case of snack culture, which looks set to be the major trend thisyear, there are concerns that becoming too accustomed to such a type of consuming and owning art and culture will lead to a tendency to avoid art and culture activities which require more time and effort. And thus the effort to examine arts and culture trends is not to follow these trends, but to ponder the significance of such trends in our future, especially for a sustainable development of the arts. Related Articles

기고자프로필

Kim Hye-in_Korea Culture and Tourism Institute

Kim Hye-in majored in Western Art and, after a career as an art gallery curator,is currently involved in research on arts and culture management and policy. After receiving her doctorate degree in arts education and museum studiesat the University of Florida, she has worked as a seniorresearcher in the Cultural and Arts Policy Research Division of the Korea Culture and Tourism Institute since 2011, and mainly researches the visual arts, art museums/art galleries, arts and culture trends, international cultural exchange, arts education and more.

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