How to write Art Criticism

First appeared in Luna Park Quarterly Her mother was happiest in the Arctic. She, on the other hand, seems most content reading and writing about art, happiest—if there must be a place—in the pages of an arts magazine Robert Fulford has called “indispensable.” She is Meeka Walsh, editor of that indispensable arts magazine, the Winnipeg-based Border Crossings. One Saturday afternoon at the Ottawa Art Gallery, I attended Walsh’s workshop on reviewing, held as part of the Gallery’s Articulation series on writing art criticism. Before discussing the nature of reviewing and the expectations she has for material published in Border Crossings, Walsh got political. Arts magazines, she said, are essential outlets… Read More

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Summary of How To Write About Literature

True to the lessons held within this book, author Kelley Griffith Jr. tells us with simple clarity right up front in the preface that “essays about literature are almost always arguments and, as such, must persuade an audience.” This is the overriding principle of Writing Essays about Literature, A guide and style sheet. The book is broken into two main sections. The first deals with the analysis of literature, including parts on how to generate essay topics about fiction, drama, and poetry, the variety of specialized approaches to interpreting literature, and how to evaluate the quality of literature. The second deals with the mechanics of writing about literature – how… Read More

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Aristotle, Rhetoric And Modern Media Culture

Squeeze a dollop of today’s society out onto a petri dish, stare at it for a while, and inevitably you’ll come to realize that most of those bright little colourful clusters flitting about in the slime are powered by a potent, barely visible urge to dominate. Crank up the lens another fold or two and you’ll notice that these same, multifariously motivated, now bigger-looking clusters, spend virtually all of their time trying to penetrate, twist and manipulate the minds of each of the millions of half-witted free floating cells contained in the self same great grey gelatinous goop that clouds the dish. (Dispensing with metaphor for the sake of clarity:… Read More

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Beer and Book Collecting

First appeared at www.biblio.com Book collecting finds its best start in your passions. If you love something, you’re going to want to learn as much about it as you possibly can. Let’s say for example it’s beer. Everything about it fascinates you – its taste, color, texture, the process by which it’s made, the bottles it comes in, the good-time television commercials that promote it, the sporting events and gear it sponsors, the parties it enhances – everything. Books have been around for more than five hundred years, which means that mountains of words have been written on every topic imaginable. Beer is no exception. Search Biblio.com’s inventory using the term “beer”… Read More

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A Graphic Literary Tourism Experience

In 2010 Nigel Beale established Literary Tourist with the intention of helping fellow book-lovers who like to travel, to find interesting literary places and events around the world. The true joy and serendipity of literary tourism can only really be conveyed through illustration. This is the story of how a simple aesthetic appreciation developed into a real-world literary adventure filled with pleasing coincidences. Ottawa is not a city one usually associates with entrepreneurs or the risky business of book publishing and yet, here, during the 1920s, a printer and monotype operator named Henry C. Miller established a commercial publishing house which, though short-lived, produced a body of work that is… Read More

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