Παρασκευή, 2 Ιανουαρίου 2009
ONUART was the project’s key financer, giving 60%
of the funding from its member spanish corporations
and banks. the spanish government provided the other
40% of the project’s funding, which had a total budget
of 25.4 million USD. this budget went to fund the artwork
as well as the construction cost to renovate the
chamber and upgrade it with the latest technology.
the main cause for the controversy was the origin of
the money given by the spanish government. the money
came from the spanish foreign ministry branch of the government. the ministry took some of the 633,000 USD
from a budget for overseas development aid and
international organizations like the united nations.
this ignited fire among spain’s political right, who argued
the money was supposed to be used to alleviate poverty
and help health care in poorer parts of the world.
in response, the ministry has insisted that the funding
for barceló’s work was separate.
the ongoing argument continues to enrage the right,
who have even discussed in the issue at the country’s parliament. the spanish media is also pushing for more transparency by the government, urging them to prove
the money was properly used.
while most contemporary artwork ignites debate for its
radical ideas or forms, barceló’s work has created
a different kind of stir. while the project’s funding continues
to create controversy, one hopes the politicians will stop bickering so that barceló’s artwork can once again be