Apollinaire: the critics of the critics of the critics
The arts consultant who goes by the alias "August Savage" wanted to know whether others have complained about the Time Out New York issue Judgement Day, in which artists, arts publicists, and artistic directors rated New York arts critics.
So I went a-googling.
August will be happy to learn that though people may not agree over whether there's any point to the exercise in the first place, they are unanimous in their skepticism over the results.
Among these people are fellow AJ bloggers Terry Teachout (scroll down to Tuesday Dec. 7 entry, "Turnabout") and Lee Rosenbaum, a.k.a. Culturegrrl, and dance critics Rachel Howard and Leigh Witchel. Witchel's DIY guide to critiquing critics is worth checking out.
Theatre blogger Playgoer's readers raise more objections to the judging criteria--and do a little experiment, where they eliminate "Influence" from the five criteria and see where that lands critics in the numbers game. [Update: One of the readers, Isaac Butler, has his own interesting post. In case you want to go there directly, here it is.]
Wicked Stage blogger Rob Kendt finds all this tableturning a dubious and guilty pleasure. But should we believe him when he also finds my name "preposterous"? Could people kindly lay off my name? It's not, in case you were wondering, a nomme de plume. It was my parents' idea--and one of their better ones. (But I should be charitable. If I'd been damned with a name as dull as mud--I mean, as Rob-- I'd probably be going around insulting people right and left too!)
Pop (music?) critic Jason Gross is uncomfortable with the whole premise that critics are out to nail artists and are now getting their comeuppance. He points out that many critics "care deeply about the artists."
Alright. That's the only substantive commentary I found. (There were complaints about the results for the food critics, too, but this being an Artsjournal blog, I think I'll leave those be.)
If anyone finds additional critics of the critics of the critics, please send the links my way. And, of course, I'm always happy to receive homegrown comments.
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Andrew Taylor on the business of arts & culture
rock culture approximately
Laura Collins-Hughes on arts, culture and coverage
Richard Kessler on arts education
Douglas McLennan's blog
Dalouge Smith advocates for the Arts
Art from the American Outback
Chloe Veltman on how culture will save the world
For immediate release: the arts are marketable
No genre is the new genre
David Jays on theatre and dance
Paul Levy measures the Angles
Judith H. Dobrzynski on Culture
John Rockwell on the arts
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Jan Herman - arts, media & culture with 'tude
Apollinaire Scherr talks about dance
Tobi Tobias on dance et al...
Howard Mandel's freelance Urban Improvisation
Focus on New Orleans. Jazz and Other Sounds
Doug Ramsey on Jazz and other matters...
Jeff Weinstein's Cultural Mixology
Martha Bayles on Film...
Fresh ideas on building arts communities
Greg Sandow performs a book-in-progress
Harvey Sachs on music, and various digressions
Bruce Brubaker on all things Piano
Kyle Gann on music after the fact
Greg Sandow on the future of Classical Music
Norman Lebrecht on Shifting Sound Worlds
Joe Horowitz on music
Jerome Weeks on Books
Scott McLemee on books, ideas & trash-culture ephemera
Wendy Rosenfield: covering drama, onstage and off
Public Art, Public Space
Regina Hackett takes her Art To Go
John Perreault's art diary
Lee Rosenbaum's Cultural Commentary