Ray Rinaldi launched his new venture, an arts criticism and news website called One Good Eye, with some strong words for the Denver Art Museum.
“DAM is the house of art,” he wrote in a review of the Star Wars costume exhibit. “The place that isn’t afraid to hurt our brains while it entertains. But the only thing Stars Wars and the Power of Costume hurts is our wallets at $28 a pop. It is among the greatest sell-outs in the recent history of American museums.”
Rinaldi covered the arts — the work itself and the politics and business behind it — for the Denver Post for 13 years before taking a buyout this July. He launched One Good Eye this week to fill the gaps in arts coverage as legacy publications cut back and to meet a few needs he sees in the Denver market.
One Good Eye has an events calendar and provides a comprehensive overview of what’s happening in Denver in the visual arts.
“This is a chance to see what is going on in Denver, all in one place, or at least a curated version,” Rinaldi said. “I think it will help Denver create an original identity for the visual arts.”
It’s also a place to take art seriously and hold it accountable.
“Artists are not getting enough feedback in this town,” he said. “There is not enough reviewing. There is not enough conversation about the arts. This is a place where artists can get some feedback. … People say, ‘There is not enough criticism going on.’ There is criticism going on. Here is where you can find it.”
Rinaldi has written about the risks of putting a lot of Jenny Morgan portraits in one place, as Pueblo’s Sangre de Cristo Arts Center does in Jenny Morgan: Rise and what “Unclassified Site Museum,” a fake archeological site in downtown Denver from Mexican artists René Godínez Pozas and Carlos Lara, suggests about our relationship to the city rapidly changing around us.
Right now, most of the pieces are written by Rinaldi himself, though Brian Corrigan brings a story from Santa Fe, New Mexico, about an artist who also is chair of the planning commission, and critic Kealey Boyd writes about a new landscape exhibit at the Boulder Museum of Contemporary Art that “mocks the romantic illusion of the West and the destruction of the land that inspired that vision.”
Rinaldi hopes to host a range of voices on the site: critics, artists, curators, gallery owners.
“I want it to be an open forum,” he said. “I want the level of conversation to be serious. But One Good Eye is open to any voice in the community.”
Rinaldi got the site going with his own resources and a grant from Denver Arts and Venues. He “welcomes support” in the form of contributions, sponsorships, underwriting in the form of advertising and so on. Right now, he’s a “not-money-making for-profit,” but he’ll organize as a non-profit if that makes more sense in the future.
Anyway. Check it out. It looks great, and the reviews made me want to get out and see things and feel things from the seeing.
And if you like what you see, share it with a friend.