Welcome to Gomp/arts
When do the arts become news? Does the staging of 11 And 12, a new play about religious tolerance - which will tour the UK and which is directed by the illustrious Peter Brook - warrant two minutes of News at Ten time?
Is how the Arts Council chooses to spend its - or, rather, your - money news? Does the lack of political and public debate about the quality of architecture in the public realm need investigation? Can the launch of a new book, film, video game, exhibition, CD, play or TV series ever be news simply because it has something important and pertinent to say? My answer is an unequivocal "yes"; is yours?
John Ruskin, the 19th-Century poet, artist and critic, had this to say:
I agree. And that's why I believe all aspects of the arts should be properly, rigorously and dispassionately reported within the context of BBC News.
And to be clear: for me, the arts encompass all areas of artistic expression, whether that means a new album from The XX, a storyline in Coronation Street or Daniel Barenboim playing Beethoven's concertos at the South Bank Centre.
This blog aims to spark conversations, opinions and insights into what's going on in the arts - the good, the bad and the quirky.
I hope that, between us, we can also initiate larger-scale debates exploring major themes and look to foster communities around areas of special interest or framed around an idea.
I might occasionally post about my experience of being the BBC's first arts editor and how I am adjusting to life as a full-time journalist and broadcaster. The BBC is, after all, a very significant arts organisation itself; I suspect that my experience is unlikely to be boring. Gomp/arts, with your help, shouldn't be boring either.