This blog originated from a very practical, personal complaint: not being able to find good, subjective, opinionated reviews on art galleries and museums. 

Yes, of course, there are your guidebooks and your professional art critics, both of which do a very good job on covering the major attractions and exhibitions.  But try this little experiment: think of a city you’ve never been to before but always wanted to visit.  Then, try using the internet to locate a nice little opinionated review of somewhere cultural to visit in under 120 minutes or less.  Unless you come across one of the top dozen museums or galleries in the world’s major cities, I’m guessing you’ll struggle.

Of course, the locations themselves tend to have increasingly good websites – very commendable, but you wouldn’t exactly expect their self-promotion to help you decide where to go and what to see in any critical way.  So let’s see if we can fill that gap just a little…

More importantly though, let’s ‘fess up to some of the limitations of this blog right here at the start:

  1. It’s going to be necessarily idiosyncratic.  It’s one individual’s interests and I make no claim to being authoratative, knowledgeable or comprehensive in any way.  If you disagree, well, that’s what the comments section is for.
  2. It’s going be constrained by geographic and economic considerations.  We’re not necessarily talking the credit crunch here, but unless I ever get paid to do this (and decide that flying is environmentally acceptable again) this blog will be largely restricted to Europe, by which I mean predominantly the UK, by which I mean often London and the South-East.  Sorry.  (All those feeling aggrieved are hereby encouraged to submit their own entries, which will be gladly received and duly credited.)
  3. It’s not necessarily going to be topical.  If I get to an exhibition (and, more pertinently, write about it) in time to be of use to anyone else considering going to it, then great.  But if it comes to it, I’ll be reviewing and reflecting on all manner of stuff what I have done – including a number of exhibitions filed away on the dusty shelves of my memory and in particular those not already respectfully recorded in the online world.
  4. I reserve the right to make up the rules as a I go along.  My starting points are museums, galleries and exhibitions.  They may not prove my end point.

Your feedback will be much appreciated. 

Yours,

Umlaut Ampersand.

 ***By the way, the origins of this blog’s name are explained (kind of) here.***