Every so often, even in sadness, it is the pleasure of an editor to thank colleagues for all their hard work and their wisdom. In May this year we said farewell to John Link, a contributing editor and long time writer for the New Art Examiner. His quality of mind is rarely equalled and we are happy to reprint his Speakeasy from 1984, still fiery, still apposite, and still insightful, in memory of his life and work. “Major styles, of course, are not the cause of major art.” is one of the most telling critiques of contemporary art and one which writers at the New Art Examiner take to heart. We, as John, understand that recognizing a major artist is as great a skill as being a major artist, whatever ‘major’ may mean, and propaganda eventually is always seen for its naked self.
Everyone dies, and everyone who dies is a loss of experience and, in John’s case, a lifelong consideration of art, aesthetics and the human condition. He is greatly missed by all those whom he taught in Michigan. From this point forwards, part of what we do here at the magazine will be in honour of his thinking.
My second thank you goes out to Pendery Weekes. She joined one of our writers’ groups here in Cornwall and spoke of her years as an art student reading the New Art Examiner. She immediately began writing for us and helping distribute issues. When Derek Guthrie decided to sit back a while from Publisher duties she agreed to take on the role. Her energy and enthusiasm is the major force behind our phenomenal success online. We passed 1.5 million unique visitors in four years and now have 50,000 plus unique visitors a month. We are on track to have a million unique visitors every 18 months and it continues to increase. While we are not overly happy about having a wordpress site with limiting functionality, with Pendery’s help we have certainly made the most of it. She even enlisted the help of her family. As she steps down after three years she leaves us with strong ties to Italian writers, an address list of some 16,000 museums, universities and galleries around the world, writers from Hong Kong (and we wish them well as communist fascist principles take over), Poland and France as well as two writers’ groups in Cornwall whose work will continue once lockdowns are eased. We were and are very fortunate to have her as a friend and advocate for our work.
A magazine is the sum of its parts. Coming together they all make something greater than their individual selves. From content to presentation we will always abide by our Statement of Purpose and continue to work from within the community of artists around the world to champion discussion of the visual experience.
To John Link, we raise a glass and fond memories and to Pendery Weekes we shall look forward to her writings and contributions as a colleague in her new roles.
Volume 35 no. 6 July/August 2021