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Welcome, FrontRow. Have a Seat.


by Anne Bothwell 8 Feb 2010

Magazine’s latest blog, FrontRow, launched today and it’s devoted to arts criticism.  Peter Simek, late of the blog Renegade Bus, leads a team of critics including Noah Simblist and former Star-Telegramer Wayne Lee Gay, weighing in on “what we make and what it means for Dallas.” It’s great to see a new set of arts […]

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Magazine’s latest blog, FrontRow, launched today and it’s devoted to arts criticism.  Peter Simek, late of the blog Renegade Bus, leads a team of critics including Noah Simblist and former Star-Telegramer Wayne Lee Gay, weighing in on “what we make and what it means for Dallas.”

It’s great to see a new set of arts voices in the Web world (or new-ish — just like Art&Seek, FrontRow is partly peopled by ink-stained refugees from print media). When Art&Seek launched almost two years ago, public conversation about the arts was most often held in the newspaper, and the newspaper could no longer support the critics leading those conversations (hence, the refugees).  And in truth, those discussions were pretty one-sided, back in the day when enabling comments wasn’t an option.

What’s to become of arts criticism as it – and arts news and information, something a bit different – continues to evolve? Art&Seek is working out a new model for public radio, television and the web.  FrontRow may prove to be an excellent multi-genre complement to Theater Jones (mostly) single-topic focus on the Web.  D and A+C are doing the same in print.  And this doesn’t begin to address the critiques and news disseminated by individual bloggers and collective groups of artists or arts organizations.  I suspect that all this effort – as well as all the shiny-new-venue activity in town the last year or so – is at least part of what is leading The Dallas Morning News to experiment with its approach and consider new partnerships.

It’s truly exciting to imagine what might unfold as more of us join the conversation – and more media exist to present our voices.  Can’t wait.

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