We are a community-led, submissions-fueled publication. If you think there’s a story hiding somewhere, we want to hear it! We are always open to working with contributors on making your idea a reality, however, the following feature and review formats are encouraged. All submissions should be sent to email@example.com.
Quick Bits (100 – 300 words)
Easy to read, easy to digest, and easy to share. Quick Bits should be submitted within 4 days following an event (gallery opening, show, artist talk, etc.) Be brief, to the point, and have fun! There is no limit to the number of Quick Bit Reviews you can submit.
Reviews: (600-1200 words)
Images should be included. Reviews should cover exhibitions, gallery events, artists, or happenings within and around Boston. This writing should be spirited, engaging, and critical without heavily relying on jargon. Don’t be afraid to express a critical opinion or be referential. There is an expectation that these reviews will include enough context/research to make them both timely and timeless in the print publication.
Artist Interviews: Interviews with artists who are, or once were, living, working, or studying in the Greater Boston Area will be accepted. These pieces should provide a dynamic, fun, engaging and insightful lens into the artist’s world. Interviews should include a brief bio about the artist and context about the interview in the form of an introduction (~150 words.) A variety of mediums, formats, and creative arrangements are welcomed. Film / video assistance available upon request.
Boston Artists Outside of Boston
Do you know of a local legend who is showing work/performing in another city? These reviews should be current and up-to-date and can fulfill any other review format listed.
Critical Perspectives (1200+ words)
Here’s your time to shine! Throw us for a curveball with your expertise and research. Critical Essays will be evaluated for our future print editions and featured prominently on our site. To submit a critical essay, please reach out to firstname.lastname@example.org to share your idea and begin the editing process. Critical essays can discuss ideas non-specific to the region, but should connect to Boston in some manner. You rock!
Speaking of documentation…
If you are covering a small, non-institutional exhibition or a non-documented happening, your photos and personal documentation are welcomed. Please submit photos of artwork that are well lit, not blurry, and feature only one piece at a time. Photos from artist interviews, panel discussions, or other happenings should be clear and avoid chaos (i.e. lots of other people) in the photo. Please reach out with any questions about photography/documentation if necessary.
ISSUE 11: EMERGE (Winter 2023)
Pitches rolling through July 10
Boston Art Review welcomes submissions of critical perspectives, profiles, reviews, interviews, and artist projects for our forthcoming print publications.
As we enter our fifth year of publishing, both print issues will be dedicated to looking back and looking ahead, respectively. Pasts and presents are inevitably entangled. Contributions to RECALL (spring 2023) may consider collective or personal histories, feature practices that are informed by the past, or reassess narratives long held as truths. EMERGE (winter 2023), meanwhile, will be a platform for art and writing that imagines possible futures. These themes are starting points; we welcome unexpected interpretations.
As we celebrate our own (albeit short) history, we’re thinking about archives and blueprints, memories and dreams. We’re reminded of spaces that have shaped Boston’s art community and scenes that are inspiring new waves. We’re reflecting on how far we’ve come, what we’ve left behind, and what we’re hoping to create.
In addition to thematic contributions, we will consider pitches for exhibition reviews and other timely local arts stories that are not directly related to the theme. We recommend familiarizing yourself with past issues to get a sense of the stories we publish.
Please direct all pitches and questions to email@example.com. Compensation will be offered for accepted pitches.
Note for Issue 11: EMERGE
Due to a special section edited by our inaugural writing fellows, we have less room to accept pitches for Issue 11. We will mainly be accepting pitches for features/critical perspectives and exhibition reviews. Submitting a writing sample or links to recent bylines is highly encouraged.
As always, any pitch not considered for the print issue will be considered for online publishing.
This is a zoom recording outlining tips and best practices for pitching to BAR. While this info session was held in advance of our last issue, its guidance remains accurate for future issues. If this is your first time writing for us, there’s a chance your first draft and final draft will look pretty different by the end of our editing process. We work collaboratively with writers every step of the way.
The following items should be included in a pitch and sent to firstname.lastname@example.org
Boston Art Review is neither an academic journal nor a news magazine; it combines scholarship, criticism, and a creative voice that spans across genres and reaches diverse readership. We welcome pieces that are poignant, engaging, pertinent, and relevant to our time and place. We make considerations based on quality and originality and most importantly on how this piece will connect to broader dialogues within the field of contemporary art and cultural criticism.
Text submissions may fit into the following categories, but our editorial team is happy to work with you on developing stories that push the boundaries of how art and criticism can be presented in print.
Critical Perspectives: Approximately 1,500 – 2,000 words. These essays will present a critical discussion and evaluation of issues or ideas relevant to art and culture. These pieces may or may not directly reflect Boston, but should reference the region within the piece. We encourage you to research or seek quotes and perspectives as needed. Critical perspectives should reference your own scholarship or position within the argument clearly. Creativity in this medium is expected.
Reviews: Approximately 800 – 1,200 words. Reviews should cover exhibitions, gallery events, public art installations, or happenings within Greater Boston or across New England. This writing should be spirited, engaging, and critical without heavily relying on jargon. Don’t be afraid to express a critical opinion or be referential. There is an expectation that these reviews will include enough context/research to make them both timely and timeless in the print publication. Reviews do not have to be tied to the issue theme.
Artist Interviews: No more than 2,200 words. Interviews with artists who are, or once were, living, working, or studying in the Greater Boston Area or artists currently exhibiting in Boston will be accepted. These pieces should provide a dynamic, fun, engaging, and insightful lens into the artist’s world. Interviews should include a brief bio about the artist and context about the interview in the form of an introduction (around 200 words.) A variety of mediums, formats, and creative arrangements are welcomed. Photo / video assistance available upon request. Please pitch to BAR before reaching out to the artist.
Artist Profiles: Similar to artist interviews, we are welcoming work on artists with a connection to Boston. Their work should explore the theme. Artists may not submit profiles of themselves.
Artist Project: We are accepting work from artists of all mediums. While all artwork submissions must be in the form of images with text, we can create dynamic content for the online site in order to include video, portfolios, links, etc. Only one artist project is selected per issue.
Other: Experimentation in print is welcome. If you have an idea for poetry, manifesto, personal essay, timelines, a special column, or otherwise, please don’t hesitate to reach out.
* All of the above are also accepted on a rolling basis for the online platform. Our editorial team are happy to work with you on story ideas, event coverage, film, and photo documentation.
I’m not exactly sure what my pitch is yet, can the BAR team help me?
Sure! If you have an idea but don’t know exactly what the right angle or direction is, send us a note well in advance of the deadline and we can offer some ideas for how your pitch could fit into this issue. Questions or vague ideas submitted within 2 days of the deadline will be considered as your pitch and there may not be room for our team to work with you.
I’m a writer and would love to write for BAR, but don’t exactly know what I want to write about. What can I do?
We’re always looking for writers to assign stories to. Send us an introduction, tell us a bit about yourself, and share some writing samples. We’ll reach out if we have a story brewing that might be a good fit.
I’m an artist and would like my work to be considered for this issue. What’s the best way to present my work?
When submitting your own work for publication, it is important to recognize that unless selected for an Artist Project, we will need to pair you with a writer who is interested in covering your work in the form of an interview, profile, or feature. With that, please note anything that might be of interest to a writer such as recent or upcoming exhibitions, forthcoming projects, or a strong hook for why your work is not only related to the theme, but timely. Why should readers know about you and your work right now? How does your work contend with larger conversations within Boston and the contemporary art world?
I’m a writer who is interested in interviewing an artist. Should I reach out to the artist first?
If the artist is not someone you have a working relationship with, (i.e. you wanted to interview Deana Lawson about her ICA show), please DO NOT reach out to the artist or the institution prior to submitting your pitch. We receive a large amount of pitches, oftentimes with multiple people pitching the same artist, exhibition, or idea and in those moments our team has the discretion to select the best writer for that subject.
If the artist is someone who you have a working relationship with, you could reach out to them and let them know you are pitching their work. They might be able to offer news or information that would strengthen your pitch.
At their discretion, the Boston Art Review editorial team reserves the right to decline a pitch for any reason. The editorial team will try to share feedback but it is not always possible based on the amount of pitches received.
In cases where the writer and artist/institution/organization (i.e. author and subject) have a close personal, working, or financial relationship, it is the responsibility of the person submitting the pitch to disclose such information. This relationship does not necessarily require termination of the pitch, but at the discretion of the editorial team may be reworked to reflect that relationship through framing (i.e. shifting to a personal essay, conversation, etc.)
The editorial team may decline a pitch due to their own relationship to a subject. The editorial team will disclose that conflict should it arise and offer an alternative should it seem fit.
The editorial team will not consider pitches from a writer whom a gallery, institution, PR firm, or organization has commissioned to pitch. Suggestions from galleries, institutions, organizations may be considered at the discretion of the editorial team and in the instance of an available writer.
CALL FOR WRITERS
Are you a writer interested in contributing to BAR, but not sure what you’d like to write about? We are currently expanding our writer roster and want to hear from you! Send us a short note introducing yourself and please include a writing sample or recent byline. Please email email@example.com to learn more.
CALL FOR EDITORS
Our editorial team is growing! We’re currently seeking to expand our editorial team with individuals who possess writing, reporting, editing, publishing, arts admin, or curatorial experience. We will especially prioritize BIPOC and LGBTQIA+ individuals who are Boston-based in an effort to ensure our editorial team is representative of the communities whose stories we often cover, but who by and large do not make up a significant portion of mastheads at critical publications in our region or across the arts publishing landscape. This is a paid opportunity with varying time commitments throughout the year. Please email firstname.lastname@example.org to learn more.