As I got the Sunday review round up down pat, I figured that it would be a good idea to to a similar thing for National and International media outlets (read: Magazines). Unfortunately, there ain’t a damn thing out there. Or to be more exact, “The Artforum archive includes Critics’ Picks, news items, and artforum.com” or about 4 years worth of archives, the word “Montreal” 7 times. Once for being the place where a writer lives, twice for 35 word mentions about the Shirin Neshat and Edouard Vuillard shows that happened here, once for the National Gallery Strike, and the other three times as mentions of where are artists are based in larger articles about something else. The other international magazines are less generous.
So I went digging. The Conseil des Arts et Lettres du Québec gave more than $400K to six magazines (and one book) to promote Quebecois culture in 2003. (Espace Sculpture got $44,200, Éditions Intervention (the book) got $59,670, Esse: $33,000, Parachute: $82,875, CV Photo: $44,200, ETC: $61,880, and Vie des Arts: $74,300.). Then the Canadian Government kicked in another $30K for Esse, and $11K for CV Photo, and I’m not going to go rooting around the Canadian Heritage, the Conseil des Arts du Montréal web sites in order to fins all the money, but it all adds up to one hell of a lot of cash. So, what did (do) we get for that?
From my perspective not a whole hell of a lot, and even less on line.
Espace has one article on line, and 11 other articles for which you gotta buy the magazine. What I find hilarious is that the article available on line is called “Sculpture for everyone” and the first line reads (in its entirety) “To present an artwork in public is de facto to establish a possible communication between the artist and the visitor; in fact, ?if no exchange takes place,? according to sociologist Antigone Mouchtouris, ?the creator-person does not exist. The public?s gaze gives the art object another dimension and allows a person to exist as a creator.? Ummm, not to belabor the obvious but who the heck is Antigone Mouchtouris? And hasn’t she heard of Franz Kafka? Erik Satie? Or Emily Dickinson? Or any number of other artists who were not heard, read or seen until way after their death? And what the heck are words like “de facto” and “establish a possible communication” doing in the beginning of an article “for everyone?”
Switching over to Esse, they have a tad more. But not much more. First the thing that made me raise an eyebrow is their counter. Now, I don’t know if it is correct or not, but when I visited the site the number was at 9,885. It appears that their site has been on line for slightly more than a year. Less than 10K hits in 12 months? For somebody trying to promote things? On the positive side Alexandra McIntosh writes a very nice 820 word article about certain parts of the “underground city” here. If you buy into the architecture as art thing, then it is an art article.
I gotta get back to work, so I will continue this on Monday. OK?
Posted by Chris Hand to Zeke’s Gallery at 5/8/2004 03:16:29 PM