Link Lineup – September 2021

September has been… a lot. I’m putting this together at the halfway point of the month and I just… want to take a nap. I want to rest. But I already got a bunch of content consumption down for the month so I felt I could pop this in the schedule and keep it moving. Cool? Cool.


How Do We Criticize Our Own? (Also, Stop Calling Lizzo a Mammy)

I love Princess Weekes. I adore her insight, the nuance and brightness she brings to tough topics, and her really great POV on fandom. This is no exception.

Criticism is something I feel very strongly about. I cut my teeth on cultural and social criticism (which overlaps often) by Said, Baldwin, and hooks to say nothing of critics in the present. Criticism is like… opinion backed up by facts and explanation. You don’t have to agree all the time – and I know the joy of going full Mariah “Sorry I Don’t Know Her” Carey when I see criticism I dislike or disagree with. It’s valid. You’re valid.

But people can’t quite understand how you criticize media made by your community – or that we can. Criticizing Wynonna Earp or Lost Girls for their very beige queer representation (and fridged Black male characters) doesn’t mean the shows are bad. It just means that they can’t be 100% what I need as a fan. Talking about what a show like Killjoys – which Princess mentions and has queer characters of color in main, supporting, and villainous roles, as a show you wish people liked more… isn’t hating on either Emily Andras production (she was creator of WE and producer/showrunner of LG at one point).

We get to critique things on our own time and on our own dime. What’s important is making sure we’re creating and consuming criticism in good faith and for the right reasons. If I got into a show for spite just to write about it and piss off the fandom… that’s not a good reason. My critique would be bad and biased in a way that’s not helpful. If you engage with criticism, knowing you can’t stand having your worldview challenged or your interests criticized, whatever response you have in a heated media fan moment? It’s unlikely to be good… or in good faith.

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Link Lineup – March 2021

Getting to know Korean modern and contemporary art with RM

Until this point, we have mainly discussed paintings, but they are not the only works of art that embody Korean history and traditions. That is not to suggest that works that inherit from tradition are always excluded from the list of artistic genres, but no list would be complete without the ceramics of Kwon Dae-sup. RM, who uploaded a picture of himself with one of Kwon’s moon jars in his arms on his social media, admiringly referred to Kwon as a master of Korean aesthetics while viewing his work s at an exhibition. 

I have this absolutely irrational fear of museums that I will never address. As a result, I do a lot of my art-learning through art criticism and the flurry of coverage that comes whenever BTS’ RM goes to a new museum exhibit or purchases art (that he or the artist then posts about on social media). I’m super grateful for this piece by art critic Jangno Lee because it looks at the art RM has looked at and what he’s loved enough to purchase and then puts all that art into its contexts for a wider audience and reveals information on the techniques that many average fans who aren’t art nerds wouldn’t know. Now, I’m holding out for some uh… hip-hop focused content? Because I desperately need to know RM and Suga’s thoughts on M-net’s latest hip hop offerings and the general state of Korean hip hop… Just saying.

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