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IQ: The art of possibility 

In tough times, the arts community often gets squeezed from all sides: lower event attendance, cuts to government funding, smaller private donations. How important is it that artists — and the people who love them — soldier on?

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Renee Lyons
Briargate

Homemaker

What's the last arts event you attended? A bunch of the Wednesday evening summer park concerts they have around town, and a few music events at Wisdom Tea House.

Ken Buck, the Republican candidate for Senate in Colorado, wants to end all federal funding for the arts. Do you agree? I feel torn on that. We have a lot of pressing practical needs, but I strongly believe in the arts.

What, if you had to, would you cut out of the federal budget? Programs benefiting the very wealthy.

Is there an arts scene you wish Colorado Springs had more of? I wish there was more dinner theater.

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Jeff Niskern
Skyway

CEO of software company

Is there an arts event you've recently attended? A wine tasting and a street fair. It's very nice to enjoy a little alcohol, mingle, and enjoy the arts in beautiful surroundings.

What's your take on Christo's "Over the River" project? It's a little pretentious, and it could negatively impact the environment. Find someplace else to do it.

Are you on board with Ken Buck's call to end federal funding of the arts? That's a complicated issue. We have to get our fiscal house in order, and no matter what gets cut, somebody's going to be unhappy.

What would you cut in the federal budget? I'd cut about half of it out.

Name something you're looking forward to this fall. Cruise Above the Clouds, a car show and cruise that begins in Woodland Park and ends in Cripple Creek.

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Galina Leonova
Downtown

Software developer

Have you attended any art events in the past six months? My husband and I saw All My Sons at the Fine Arts Center, and I attended some classes at the Bemis School of Art.

How do you feel about Christo's "Over the River" project? It's more about self-display than art.

Do you agree with Ken Buck's goal to end all federal funding of art? I strongly disagree. Art is extremely important and it requires help.

Arts-wise, what are you looking forward to this fall? My husband and I have season tickets to the Colorado Springs [Philharmonic]. It'll be interesting to see whom they pick as the new conductor. I'm also going to all the Metropolitan Opera broadcasts they do at Tinseltown.

  • How important is it that artists — and the people who love them — soldier on?

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