In an innovative hybrid of street journalism and mobile video booth, partners Jennifer Conlin and Dan Shaw are rolling out their CriticCar for Detroit this September. Drivers for CriticCar will park its brightly colored vans outside art exhibitions and openings, museums, music venues and more… and its cameras will be poised for anyone who wants to give a review.
CriticCar was chosen out of 233 applicants for the National Endowment for Arts and Knight Foundation’s Community Arts Journalism Challenge. The stipulation in the challenge wasn’t just to come up with an innovative way for arts coverage to keep up with evolving patterns of news consumption, it also had to foster community building and support for the arts.
As Detroit continues to receive international attention for its burgeoning art scene, we know we are in dire need of arts criticism as structural support. CriticCar gives residents themselves an accessible voice… and a stake… in the creative endeavors of their community.
Conlin hopes to build a sustainable model for arts coverage in and around the Detroit region, and eventually to expand nationwide. To keep up with CriticCar, you can find them on Facebook.