From: paula firstname.lastname@example.org
Date Received: September 26
thankyou for opening up the best artsite to everyone again!!
We're not sure why Artthrob has suddenly become accessible again to non-M-Web dial-up subscribers, but we're very happy that this seems to be the case! We are still in the process of moving to World Online where Artthrob will remain accessible to all.
From: Tshepo (email@example.com
Date Received: September 16
OK, don't you think it'll be better if you had larger photographs, cause when i click on some photo links i still see the same size picture.
We provide clickthroughs to larger images wherever possible. We depend on artists, galleries or institutions to supply the majority of our material, so don't have complete control of their quality and/or scale. When only a poor-quality, small-scale image is supplied, there will be no clickthrough at all.
From: Signs of Life (Rob) (firstname.lastname@example.org
To: Kathryn Smith (email@example.com
Date Received: September 6
Subject: Exhibition listing - urgent
I saw the listing of our exhibition at the Little Louvre Gallery this morning. Amidst glowing copy on other exhibitions in Johannesburg our entry starts with cynical sarcasm that clearly transcends anything that could be construed as light hearted humour. This clouds the whole entry about the event. If you or whoever wrote this struggle to take the name of the gallery seriously what are readers expected to think of the work exhibited? One careless line published undermines substantial investment and hard work that has gone into putting together promoting this event for no apparent reason whatsoever. As an exhibiting artist I have found the gallery owners a pleasure to work with. I understood Artthrob's listings to be where one finds factual information about events and not speculative opinion.
I am puzzled at your motivation. Surely you would not take pleasure in running down an event you have no knowledge of purely on the basis of a name you may not have chosen yourself. I would like to think that this is a careless error and will be rectified immediately. It reflects poorly on the integrity of Artthrob and is most unfortunate. Colin Cole and Elaine Cowley, the gallery owners, are justifiably upset about this.
Gauteng editor Kathryn Smith responds: While I appreciate your concerns, Artthrob like any publication has an editorial tone, which in Artthrob's case is opinionated (what criticism isn't?), funky and critically informed. My comment had nothing to do with the space itself but simply the choice of name.
I visited the space for the opening of the exhibition. The work was generally technically sophisticated with some very good pieces from each artist, but as a whole the individual artists could have benefited from more stringent and imaginative curating. The mauve exterior of the gallery and predominant deep plum-brown and bright yellow tones in the interior were distracting to say the least.
Artthrob's focus is on contemporary art from South Africa. We pride ourselves on informed critical commentary and the publicising of events and artists that operate in a way that is appropriate to this editorial angle. While we respect the importance of getting information about all aspects of the contemporary South African art scene out there (the lack of dedicated arts coverage in this country in all media is painful), Artthrob is not, and cannot be, all-inclusive. We reserve the right to exclude listings and advertisers who are not appropriate to our focus. The Little Louvre is not the kind of gallery that would ordinarily get coverage on this site; however, the artist concerned emailed Artthrob with a URL and requested a listing. I respected that request.
Whether criticality is appropriate in listings is a moot point. Personally, I feel that the remark hardly constitutes criticism, merely an acknowledgement that given the gallery's focus up until now, it seems ironic. Moreover, where comment and context can be provided in a listing (the web provides this opportunity in terms of space), all the better. The more galleries we have of all kinds in this country, the greater the benefit to the artistic community. But if we all continue to take ourselves so seriously, the "immovable bunkers of opinion" (to quote from a second email from Mills) will have to remain as they are.
From: Janet firstname.lastname@example.org
Subject: Problems viewing Artthrob
Date received: August 29
I am getting the M-Web error page again. Is it my computer or your server?
It's not your computer. ArtThrob is currently hosted on an M-Web server, and access is denied to non M-Web dial-up subscribers. The good news is that we will be moving to another host very shortly and ArtThrob will be freely accessible again
From: R Mountany Mountr@unisa.ac.za
Subject: Sponsorship request
Date received: August 30
To whom it may concern,
I am a Psychology Master's student at Unisa, currently involved in a community healing project called 'Agape' which is based in Mamelodi. Part of the need that has been identified is therapy for traumatised children from violence-filled homes. It is with this in mind that I would urge you to consider sponsoring materials or an amount that could go towards creating art therapy sessions for these children. Anything that you would be able to give would be greatly appreciated and could go a long way in healing the greater Mamelodi community.
Please do not hesitate to contact me if you have any questions. Thank you for your time in considering this request.
Tel: (012) 429 3272 or 082 378-3826
Unfortunately we're not in any position to help with funding. We don't usually post requests for funding on the site but your cause is worth making an exception for. Can anybody out there help in any way?