Thursday, January 25, 2007

Rousseau on Mini-Matic

Dr. Claudia Rousseau, in the Gazette newspapers, reviews the "Minimatic" multi-gallery exhibition going on in various Bethesda venues.

"Although it isn’t the Artomatic we have all come to love, it is certainly a lesson in what happens when gallerists are asked to choose from such a huge menu. The best tend to rise to the top, like cream in unhomogenized milk, to the point that duplicate picks had to be sorted out, and names familiar from previous exhibits turned up again, although some with new work. On the other hand, all the work is not great; some real bloopers are on view — just enough, perhaps, to give these exhibits a feel of the real Artomatic circus."
Read her review here.

Here's an idea for the Washington Post: the WaPo already owns the Gazette newspapers, which are published weekly in various counties and cities in suburban Maryland.

Since they already own those newspapers, they probably also own the copyright and reproduction rights to any and all stories and columns published in the Gazette.

So... why not "add" some of the Gazette gallery reviews to the Sunday Arts mix once in a while and give WaPo readers a "second" voice and a "second" set of eyes on the area's art scene?

Makes sense to me.

An idea for Washington, DC

Or for any other American city that it; but it is especially appropriate for the nation's capital.

A Photographer Laureate.

Yes, yes a Photographer Laureate.

The idea, inspired by historically successful photographic projects including the Farm Security Administration's WPA photographers, the National Endowment for the Arts, and most directly by the City of Tampa's Public Art Program own Photographer Laureate Program (now seeking its 5th Laureate), would be for the DC Commission on the Arts and Humanities to create and fund the program to have each yearly Photographer Laureate create a "volume" or portfolio of their city-focused work which then would be added to the City's Public Art Collection.

The subject matter would be open but thematically focused on the city itself, and may include images of specific sites and subjects such as landmarks, landscapes, architecture, etc., or more peripheral themes such as portraits, cultural diversity, labor, industry, the arts, families, education, etc.

Over the course of time, the District's collection would accumulate (and hopefully display somewhere) a full, continously growing representation of the multiple and diverse perspectives of the various photographers' views of the District.

Tampa has a $25,000 budget for this that they give to their Photographer Laureate to deliver work over the year's period. Certainly the District could come up with a similar budget to accomplish this.