Has anyone noticed the unevenness in the geographic distribution of great art in Europe?
For example the Dutch can claim some of the greatest painters but have produced almost no musicians of note?
The central Germanic-Austro Hungarian region has many great musicians but no serious painters or even writers ?(Goethe and Schiller excepted). The reverse is true of Britain, plenty of great painters and writers but only a handful of musicians.
In sculpture, Italy reigns supreme, all the great ones seem to be confined to that country, I have not heard of any major figure outside Italy.
The question is why is this so? Could one reason for the peculiar distribution of skills be economic?
In society, the arts require a minimum amount of leisure. Societies living on the margins of existence will rarely produce anything-people will be spending their time searching for food and the basics of existence, there is no time to spend on abstract thinking or creation.
With increasing wealth a society can support craftsmen and artisans who are not directly engaged the production of food or other necessities of life.
Could the different ways in which countries or regions developed have affected the way in which the arts developed?
The early civilisations of Greece and Rome set the philosophical and aesthetic foundation for Western art. Emperors, Kings and the Church were early patrons whose dictates may have shaped the development of the arts before economies developed to the point where merchants and the general public could become supporters.
Perhaps they way training took place - the way the necessary skills were learned and transferred have played a part?
These are just questions that occurred to me. Does anyone have any thoughts?