Mr. Speaker, last night in Venice two Alberta artists, Janet Cardiff and George Bures Miller, won a special prize at the prestigious Venice Biennale International Art Exhibition.
This is the most recent example of the world class art being produced by Canadians and supported by the Canada Council. Funding went to Cardiff and Miller for the creation of “The Paradise Institute” and to Winnipeg's Plug In Gallery for the presentation and promotion of the work. Only weeks ago Inuit filmmaker Zacharias Kunuk won the Camera d'Or at the Cannes International Film Festival.
In an increasingly globalized environment it is crucial that Canadian artists have the opportunity to find audiences. They would not be able to do this without public funding and, in particular, the Canada Council's support.
Like public investment in science and technology, public arts funding is an investment in Canadian creativity, paying off many times over in enhancing our reputation as a dynamic, vital and above all passionately artistic nation. I salute our Canadian artists.