A year and a half after ceasing publication of its online magazine, Artnet.com has just launched Artnet News, a new site for international art and market news. The site is launching with “10 full time editors and writers and 5 columnists on 3 continents who will bring you the latest news, reviews and features on the art world and market,” according to an email sent out yesterday by editor in chief Benjamin Genocchio.
From 2010 to December 2013, Genocchio, a former New York Times contributor, served as editorial director at Louise Blouin Media, which publishes Art & Auction, Modern Painters, and the site Artinfo.com, among others. In December, he was lured away from LB Media by Artnet CEO Jacob Probst, son of Artnet founder Hans Neuendorf.
It’s heartening that instead of bailing on the publishing industry, Artnet—which provides art market information, holds online auctions, and offers a subscription auction-price database—was overhauling the site and its approach to the news., though some may oppose the sacrifice of reviews and features in favor of news. (In 2010, former Artnet and Artinfo writer Ben Davis penned an interesting article on the overall shift in the industry from criticism to news.)
As reported in the New York Post, Genocchio’s departure from LB Media was less then amicable. He has hired seven former LB staffers, including Art & Auction publisher Kate Shanley and Victoria Fuller, senior vice president of business development at artinfo.com. “I got fed up with Louise’s nonsense,” Genocchio told the Post, “With any luck we will drive Louise out of business.”
LB Media made the news in December when Blouin canceled the contracts of at least 25 writers even as she announced an expansion.
The original Artnet Magazine was launched in 1998 by Neuendorf, who pegged Art in America contributing editor Walter Robinson as the editor, a position he held for 16 years and managed on a tight budget. The 2012 change in management precipitated the magazine’s closing. Robinson, also a painter, and two colleagues at Artnet Magazine’s French and German sites, Rachel Corbett and Emily Nathan, lost their jobs, along with part-time staff.