Critical Conversation: Do Critics Make The Art?

Sydney music critic Peter McCallum observes that great critics don’t reult in great art. “The vigorous state of criticism in London may be a better measure of its democracy than of its art, particularly as far as composition is concerned. That isn’t entirely the critic’s fault. Producing the sort of society which values music is more than critics can achieve. It goes to much deeper values built up over time and is particularly complex in a modern metropolis, which, of its nature, has several powerful forces which are somewhat antithetical to art. It also has the critical mass to enable diverse artistic activity to take place but, as we would all be aware, there are also many deadening effects. In the long term it is the art that is important, not the critics. Criticism is a good measure of social a democratic health but that doesn’t automatically imply artistic health.”