This is a surprising list: Beirut, Bogotá, Cluj, Delhi, Istanbul, Johannesberg, Lagos, San Juan, São Paolo, Seoul, Singapore. And my home town, Vancouver, also makes this list of 12 global cities setting the new agenda for contemporary art. Like all Phaidon’s publications, the book is lovely in it’s own right, but as I read
The 19th C art critic, John Ruskin said a civilization writes its story in three books: the book of words, the book of deeds and the book of art. The last one, he said, is the most trustworthy. If so, then we can trust that something culturally and socially significant is happening when these cities are stepping around the great art centres of London, Paris and New York. For this reason, Art Cities of the Future moves onto my list-of-books-about-education-that aren’t-really-about-education. Like Alexis Ohanian’s Without Their Permission, it speaks to a challenge to traditional structures. Someone, or some group, is going to step around the whole institution we call education.