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Press Corps Discussion 1:
Contribution, Corroboration or Collation

Static Gallery, Liverpool, L1 9JD.
2pm Wednesday 6th October 2004

JJ Charlesworth, Editor, The Future
Leigh French, Editor, Variant
Joe Riley, Arts Editor, Liverpool Echo

All media navigates a balance between forming the opinion of their readership and being responsive to the interests of their readers. Most publications, whether printed or otherwise, have made a decision about which role they seek. Contribution, Corroboration or Collation brings together three publications that write about art, to discuss their position.

The discussion will seek to get beyond polarised positions to understand the complex relationship between publications and audience. What leads to the need for a new publication and how does it build an audience whilst also developing a new position? Does a publication need to build a discrete readership, and if so, to what extent does this quest to shape the market affect content and the autonomy of writers? To what extent is the relationship between a publication and its audience predictable? What is the affect of fast and responsive reportage in comparison to the development of a strand of thinking over a length of time? In addition, new interactive media presents greater opportunities for media to engage with their audience and to involve them in directly shaping opinion. To what extent do these developments offer potential for a greater reflection of reality, or do they pose a threat to the critical capacity of the press?

The interaction between publication and audience is subtle and changes significantly through shifts in the political climate which influence the role reportage or criticism plays. What are the factors which influence whether art press shapes thought or simply collates activity today?


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