可以更大的餅!富而好藝時機至?

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1988 / 7月

文‧陳桂芳 圖‧鄭元慶


近年來,專程組團到歐美聽音樂會、看表演、賞畫的風氣大盛。人們不免也心急:什麼時候,我們亦可免去旅途勞頓,經常能夠在國內設備一流的場地聆賞大師丰采?


幾個月前,世界三大男高音之一多明哥將在東京演出的消息一經傳出,國內女青年會即積極向日方經紀人爭取來華演唱的機會。

連續幾星期,「多明哥來不來?」的新聞,成為藝文版最受矚目的話題。待到五月底確定行程,主辦單位開始預售門票,雖然一般票價在兩千元以上,但是一票難求的情形,還是讓購票隊伍蜿蜒在青島西路上。一些年輕人索性帶了蓆子、坐墊、徹夜排隊。緊接著傳大藝術公司宣佈力邀芭蕾舞巨星紐瑞耶夫,又引起藝壇一陣興奮。目前已決定將在九月初讓國人一睹這位傳奇藝人的迷人風采。

巨星、大師翩然來

一波接著一波的巨星之約和觀眾熱烈的反應,彷彿透露了一個令人快慰的訊息——當來自全球各地的商人,以無比凌厲的攻勢搶佔擁有外匯多達七百五十億美元、平均國民所得為五千美元的台灣市場時,我們的社會在穿用皮爾卡登、開著賓士轎車的同時,在藝文活動上,也有機會聆賞大師級藝術家的風采,更重要的是,願意「掏出腰包」,使這樣的活動、這樣的消費,變成「必需」。

幾乎就在同時,報上炒出了另一個藝文新聞:台北維茵藝廊由日本一位收藏家處,借來畢卡索、莫內、雷諾瓦等九位赫赫有名的大師作品公開展出;卻因展覽收費而未見預期中的「熱烈場面」。於是,「富人口袋、窮人心態」之譏,又讓台北人被好好損了一頓。

國人的文化消費究竟能不能造就出足以吸引人的「台灣市場」?為什麼爭睹多明哥能徹夜守候、不惜千金,而藝壇巨擘畢卡索卻遭冷落呢?

「這真是不可思議」,花盡心力,又付下大筆簽證費的維茵畫廊負責人陳恩賜,先是對觀眾的反應表示詫異——甚至有人以小小一家藝廊不可能借到真跡為由,來質疑作品的可信度。他繼而感慨「國人的文化消費習慣還沒有建立」,他表示,大家習慣看免費畫展是事實,而面對畢卡索等大師的真跡,卻無預期的吸引力,不免是文化素養的問題了。

教育歸教育、商業歸商業

自然科學博物館館長漢寶德由另一個角度來看這個現象。他認為,文化活動基本上是公益事業。主辦者的目的如果在推廣文化,可以請求政府補助,就沒有收費的問題;如果是商業性的成本回收,理當收費,卻不能抱怨社會大眾的程度不夠,不來捧場。他在一篇短評中作了這樣的結論:「畢卡索的廣告效果是否具有足夠的吸引力,要投資者去判斷,商業活動要投資者擔風險,是不必多說的。」

畢卡索風波已過,買票看畫的人稱不上踴躍,但也畢竟引來了有意購畫的客戶。

陳恩賜有感而發,他表示,台灣在卅年間,締造舉世矚目的經濟奇蹟,但我們自然不可能期待文化素養也有「奇蹟」出現,因此有賴政府補助、企業支持,慢慢培養一個富而好藝的社會氣氛。此外,對國家形象而言,如果我們能像日本人那樣在歐洲市場中大力購買真跡名作,必將有所助益。

欣賞精緻藝術畢竟是「閒暇」的產物,而我們由埋頭苦幹,勤奮地創造奇蹟,至今所享受的五千美元平均所得,時間並不算長。

以近十年為例。比起十年前,我們的文化活動和設施,有些什麼改變?

有錢又有閒以後?

民國六十七年,國內尚未有文化中心,而稍具規模的表演場所只有台北國父紀念館、台中中興堂、高雄育樂堂等六處。

十年之間,除了我們擁有了十八個遍佈各地的文化中心、完成國家劇院及音樂廳;繼台北市立美術館開幕之後,又有台中省立美術館及高雄美術館將相繼出現,另外自然科學博物館則已邁向第二年,至於民間藝廊,光是台北一地,粗略估計就有百餘家。

一般說來,國內的博物館、美術館都收費,但只是象徵性的低票價;而文化中心、藝廊的展覽則多半免費。早年美術館、藝廊的活動多以國人作品為主,但引進錄影帶、書面資料,及專家演說提供國人國際藝術市場的資訊。

近年來,大規模的國際名家作品相繼出現,以近一個月為例,文建會的國際袖珍雕刻展、台北市立美術館的達達藝術展、省立台中美術館即將展出中國文化影響下的美國西海岸當代藝術展……,都是大手筆。

在表演藝術上,除了台北藝術季、文藝季活動外,成立恰滿十年的新象藝術中心,在引進國外表演團體上扮演了重要的角色。

新象中心負責人許博允根據他的調查指出,民國六十二年之前,台北市每週一次參與文化活動的人口約在一千二百人次,每月一次約七千五百人至七千八百人次;六十二年以後每週一次,參與文化活動約五千人次,每月一次約兩萬人次。而新象設立後整個市場增加四至五倍的消費人口,並且持續成長至一九八四年。

掏出荷包,共襄藝舉

消費人口呈持續成長,自然意味著我們的社會在勤奮之後擁有了富足,又在富足之後擁有了閒暇,也同時產生文化消費的需求。至於如何因應需求,讓消費者願意掏出荷包、共襄「藝」舉,就要各憑本事了。

許博允以民國六十二年為分界點,乃是因為這一年堙A「雲門舞集」的成立,帶來相當大的影響。林懷民領導的「雲門」以民族風格的現代舞,使國人眼光為之一亮。他們也透過各種媒體傳達觀念,並且不斷下鄉演出。

另外,郭小莊的「雅音小集」,也持續在推廣、演講上下了不少功夫。因此,這兩個表演團體日後的演出,都有相當好的票房紀錄。

換句話說,消費者在選擇的過程中,對表演者「熟悉」的程度,是重要的影響因素,也因此十年來新象在推出國際知名表演團體或個人的同時,也扮演了推介的角色。

他們透過報紙藝文版、音樂雜誌,和出版「藝訊」,來介紹表演者及表演節目的背景、地位等種種訊息。

文化消費也要廣告

在新象的經驗中,一些國人熟悉的華裔音樂家,像馬友友、傅聰、林昭亮、胡乃元、黃安源……等,多半有極高的票房。但也有難以預料的情況,像甫得依莉莎白大獎後回國的胡乃元,在台北、高雄兩地的賣座極佳,但回到台南家鄉,賣座卻不盡理想,不免使人大感意外,也使胡乃元顯得有些失望。

另外像大師級巨擘,大提琴家羅斯托夫波維奇、傅尼葉、小提琴家史坦,或流行音樂波爾瑪莉樂團、理查克萊德門等等,經由唱片、雷射片的市場中,一般人對之十分熟悉,因此多出現一票難求的場面。

不過一些在國際上聲譽卓著的音樂家,像女中音柏岡札、英國藝苑古樂合奏團等,卻完全不如預期中熱烈,可見國內消費者聆賞的範圍,還有待進一步開拓。

像任何商品一樣,引導消費走向,主要得靠傳播——廣告。近來國內文化機構的推廣方式逐漸由固定看板張貼海報、向報章雜誌寄發新聞稿,展開了進一步出擊。像故宮博物院和新聞局國內處合作開始在電視上「打廣告」,美術館除靜態展出外也不斷舉辦相關的動態演出,都是可喜的突破。

政大新聞研究所所長汪琪,提起國外藝文活動的資訊傳達方式時表示,它們無孔不入地出現在每天生活空間觸目可見之處,如地下鐵的走道兩旁,到處行走的電聯車身,都有設計極其精美的廣告。較諸國內好容易晚上得空想看看表演,一時還不易找到資訊來源。

然而各文化中心或機構被問到為何不考慮使用電視或公車外車廂廣告時,一致回答:經費不足。

稅制偏高嗎?

經費不足的原因很多,但民間團體最感困擾的還是稅制。國內目前的表演活動主辦單位,必須繳納營業稅、娛樂稅及教育稅。

「一九八四年以後營業稅率提高為百分之五。這項措施簡直扼殺了整個市場生機,加上娛樂稅及教育捐等高達百分之十一。且主辦單位要預繳百分之百的稅金,日後憑未賣出的票申請補退稅金,這種規定實在不能鼓勵精緻藝術的發展」,許博允略顯激動地表示。

即將引進世界級芭蕾舞星紐耶瑞夫的傳大藝術公司負責人周敦仁,也曾多次在公開場合表示,娛樂稅的稅率降低、甚至取消,一直都是我們夢寐以求,同時是恢復藝術表演生機的必然措施。

於是去年八月包括蘭陵、新象、雲門、表演工作坊等十三個表演藝術團體成立「表演藝術團體聯合會」,要求修改目前表演藝術活動的稅捐制度,短程目標是廢除稅金預繳制度、取消貴賓券繳稅,以及將目前百分之五的營業稅率,恢復為以前的百分之一。

表演藝術團體聯合會召集人吳靜吉說:「如果娛樂稅暫時還不能廢除,則全面降低稅率亦有其必要性。」

目前,財政部賦稅改革委員會及台北市議會,已經開始研究對娛樂稅的降低或取消辦法。曾經辦盲人歌手史提夫.汪德在台演唱會的唱片業者段鍾潭表示,「這樣的轉機傳遞著一個訊息,這個市場將因娛樂稅的取消或降低呈現空前的大變動,業者現正摩拳擦掌以待呢!」

期待企業界支持

除了稅制的改變,藝文活動爭取企業界支持,也是國人共同的期待。以鄰近的日本為例,東京有名的百貨公司,幾乎都投資了高水準的藝廊、美術館。但維茵藝廊負責人陳恩賜強調,這也與稅制有密切關係。

他表示日本曾經有過一段文化建設遠遠落在經濟成長之後的時期。當時日本的作法是訂立藝術品捐購可抵稅的制度,及藝術投資可納入所得稅扣除額的辦法,以鼓勵民間或企業參與文化建設。因此這些由企業投資的美術館,正是稅制鼓勵下的產物。

其實日本的這些措施在歐美先進國家行之有年,也早已形成企業界樂於捐贈或支持文化事業的優良傳統。

儘管稅制的改革還在醞釀之中,當文化投資在先進國家已成熱門趨勢時,國內企業界的態度也漸漸由排斥、開放而接納。

文化市場,只欠東風?

去年由於游資過多,加上國外熱中藝術投資的刺激,國內企業界投資藝術的意願日增,初步反應是進入國際拍賣市場。如香港和倫敦舉行仇焱之收藏品的拍賣,其中拍賣的商品大都由香港、新加坡、台灣等地的中國人高價收藏。

這也顯示「如果能開放藝術品的進出口,台灣無疑是具備國際藝術市場的條件」,被問到蘇富比在台分公司的營業情況時,駐台代表認為「只欠東風」。

這股能吹開台灣藝文消費市場的東風究竟該打那兒來?

在當年的遠見和魄力下、已經完成諸多硬體建設之後,政府是否能夠不惜犧牲財政稅收或降低經濟成長目標來追趕文化建設?而大家逛美術館、進音樂廳,企業界投資藝術品、文化事業,能否就像擁有信用卡、BMW跑車或穿用皮爾卡登一般,成為消費者追求的目標?這些都是關鍵。

[圖表]

P.30

國外藝術表演團體來華演出地區統計:

※資料來源:學術交流基金會

〔圖片說明〕

P.24

亮麗的國家劇院倒映在對面中央圖書館的入門玻璃,這些建築物是台灣在經濟成長後文化建設硬體方面的傲人成就。但有待發揮更大的功能。

P.25

表演海報是主要吸引觀眾的媒介之一。

P.26

國內各項藝文活動的推廣方式已由靜態展出,增加許多相關活動的動態表演。(陳品君攝)

P.27

星期假日全家大小一起到美術館接受美的洗禮,可以說是「最低消費、最高品質」的休閒活動。

P.28

國家音樂廳,水準一流,是否能吸引更多的國際表演團體前來?

P.29

從蘇富比國際拍賣公司要在香港拍賣前,曾先在台灣展出的預備動作,可想見台灣市場在這方面被看好的發展潛力。(張良綱攝)

相關文章

近期文章

EN

Getting Ac-culture-ated

Chen Kwe-fang /photos courtesy of Arthur Cheng /tr. by Phil Newell

When advanced ticket sales began for a forthcoming trip to Taipei by Placido Domingo, tickets were hard to get though the average price exceeded US$60. Some kids went so far as to line up the night before to get tickets.


This series of events and enthusiastic reactions shows that, besides wearing Pierre Cardins and driving Mercedes, people on Taiwan are prepared to reach into their purses to partake of the arts, given the right artist.

Yet, almost at the same time, a public showing of works by Picasso, Monet, Renoir and others, brought to Taipei from Japan, got the cold shoulder. This caused some to criticize Taipei people as "nouveau riche" lacking taste in spending their money.

David Chen, who spent a lot of effort and money on behalf of the Galerie Wien to bring the art to Taiwan, sighed, "It's really incredible." Some people even doubted that a small gallery could arrange such a show, and questioned the authenticity of the paintings. Also a factor was that people are accustomed to free art shows, and, notes Chen, "people on Taiwan have not yet developed the habit of cultural consumption."

But Han Pao-teh, Director of the Museum of Natural Science, has a different view. He argues that if one's purpose is really to spread culture, then entrance fees shouldn't enter into it; if the purpose is commercial--to recover costs or make a profit--then the investors must take the risk and can't complain if the public response is not good.

Nevertheless, the exhibition did attract some buyers. Chen says that Taiwan has over the last thirty years created an economic miracle, but that one can't expect a cultural miracle. In the short term it will be necessary to rely on the support of the government and business community to maintain the arts. But if, like Japan, people on Taiwan begin to collect, this will be helpful to the country's image.

Indeed, the arts are unlikely to witness a miracle; but after all, people on Taiwan have spent the last thirty years with their noses to the grindstone, and the current level of prosperity is only a recent phenomenon.

How much progress has been made? A lot. In the last ten years, eighteen new culture centers have been established across the island; the national theater and concert hall have been completed; the Taipei Fine Arts Museum opened, followed by the Provincial Museum in Taichung and another in Kaohsiung. There are now over a hundred private galleries in Taipei alone.

And in the past shows were limited mostly to Chinese artists, with occasional videotapes or lectures on foreign art. Today there are frequent showings of art from abroad, as testified to by the current Dada exhibition at the Taipei Fine Arts Museum, among others. Hsu Po-yun of the New Aspect Promotion Corporation estimates that, taking Taipei as his example, before 1982 the number of people who participated in some arts activity once a week was 1,200, with 7,500 or so going once a month. After the opening of the popular Cloud Gate Dance Troupe gave the arts a boost, the figures went up to 5,000 and 20,000 respectively. The opening of New Aspect also gave a new impetus to the arts, with participation increasing four or five times.

This constant increase in arts consumption indicates that the society of the R.O.C. has become wealthy enough and created enough leisure time to lead to a demand for culture. Whether or not a particular show attracts consumers depends on the show itself.

One of the main factors affecting consumer choice is name recognition. In this regard New Image has played an important role over the last ten years in introducing the arts and artists to Taiwan.

As with any product, attracting consumers requires advertising. Recently cultural organizations in Taiwan have moved from simple posters to sending articles to publications to putting on TV ads, as has recently been done jointly by the Government Information Office and the National Palace Museum. Besides putting on exhibitions, museums now sponsor related performances to attract audiences to see the art itself.

Wang Chi, Chairman of the Graduate Institute of Journalism at National Cheng Chi University, notes that abroad arts activities are widely advertised, but that in Taiwan, when one wants to attend one, information is not so easy to get. When asked why they do not do more advertising on TV or by plastering the streets with posters, cultural organizations uninanimously responded that they lacked the funds.

But the biggest problem facing private groups is taxes. To put on a show requires payment of an operating tax, entertainment tax, and education tax. Further, the sponsoring organization must pay the taxes up front, and must apply for a rebate if some tickets are left unsold. "These kinds of regulations cannot encourage refined exhibitions," points out Hsu.

Consequently, in August of last year, Cloud Gate, New Aspect, and eleven other arts and performing groups formed the "Association of Performing Arts Groups," Their immediate goals are to eliminate tax prepayment, the tax on tickets, and to have the five percent operating tax reduced to its pre-1984 level of one percent, a step which the association's director Wu Jing Jyi calls "essential."

The Tax Reform committee of the Ministry of Finance and the Taipei City Assembly have already begun to look into ways to reduce or eliminate the entertainment tax. Tuan Chung-tan effused, "The market will see unprecedentedly big changes because of the elimination or reduction of the entertainment tax. Promoters are rubbing their hands in anticipation!"

It is also everyone's hope that the arts can win the support of the business community. In Tokyo, for example, most big department stores lay out a lot of funds for exhibitions or museums. But as David Chen of Wien points out, this is also related to the tax system, which creates incentives to invest in the arts. Indeed, it is common in the developed nations to have tax incentives for support for the arts.

Business on Taiwan slowly comes around. Last year, because of a capital surplus and the impetus of a surge in arts investment abroad, the willingness of the Taiwan business community to make similar investments also rose. First steps were made into the market. For example, when the collection of Chou Yan-chih was sold off in Hong Kong and London, most of the buyers were from HK, Singapore, and Taiwan.

These developments indicate the increasing appreciation of and desire to collect art on Taiwan. "If the importing of art were liberalized, there is no question that Taiwan has the conditions to be an international art market," says Sotheby's representative on Taiwan.

Will the government sacrifice revenue for art's sake? And will consumption of the arts become as popular as consumption of Pierre Cardins and BMW's? On Taiwan people have long been skilled at "the art of the deal." But how will they deal with the art?

Statistics on Foreign Art Performing Groups to the R.O.C.[Picture]

(Information source: Foundation for Scholarly Exchange)

[Picture Caption]

The beautiful National Theater reflected in the glass door of the Central Library which faces it. These buildings "reflect" the cultural construction which has followed economic growth.

Posters are the most common media for attracting consumers of culture.

Promotion of arts activities has moved from passive to "active measures." (photo by P. J. Chen)

Taking the whole family to the museum on Sunday is low-cost, high-quality entertainment.

The National Concert Hall is first-rate. Will it succeed in attracting more international performers to Taipei?

The fact that Sotheby's did promotional work in Taiwan prior to their sale in Hong Kong testifies to the potential of the Taiwan market. (photo by Vincent Chang)

 

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