Christina Rees Wants More Art Criticism

The former owner of RoadAgent and current curator of  Fort Worth Contemporary Arts (and former D Magazine associate editor) presses the case that local media, including yours truly, should do more to cover the arts less promotionally and more critically.  Peter Simek at RenegadeBus seconds that motion and ups the ante (“D Magazine reeks of it,” says he, referring to a “quippy little piece that passed as arts criticism in FDLuxe“).

I am, of course, grateful for any advice I can get on how to run a media operation. As it happens, I agree with Christina. (As for Peter, I have no idea what he is talking about, except for affecting a general snobbishness toward the Great Unwashed — which I suppose includes the writers, editors, and readers of D Magazine — which role I thought Jeremy Weeks already performs admirably.) 

The problem they don’t address, and I am trying to address as I think this problem through, is how to pay critics to do the work we would all like to see them do. Advertisers aren’t interested in it; hence, the demise of art criticism in newpapers. Foundations are besieged by arts organizations for direct support; arts criticism doesn’t even make the list. So the quandry, which I am working on, is how to make Christina’s vision a reality. Meanwhile, I hope she keeps pressing the issue. Nothing good happens without a nag.

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