Playing Hardball With The Big Boys

Although it was the theme of an issue which focused on art, taxes, politics and criticism, the magazine itself placed inside a cover printed on a large manila envelope. “Playing Hardball with the Big Boys” also symbolized the publications growth during volume 12 via hard-stock covers and increased production values throughout—this in addition to ART PAPERS’ credible reputation as a growing national publication. That year brought some inventive theme issues, including the third Artist’s Pages Issue (see photo), subtitled “Campaign Promises” in honor of the presidential election of that year, and issues on performance and art and funding. Glenn Harper’s editorship was now firmly in place, and a clear sense of consistent political involvement was emerging while the publication continued with some of the themes it had established earlier—such as Southern folk art, seen in a lengthy obituary for Minnie Evans, and African-American artists, which manifested as an entire issue on “Contemporary Black Artists.” Other articles of interest included interviews with Keith Haring and Group Material. Also of note was a special issue sponsored by the Southern Arts Federation, which contained an insert on the National Endowment for the Arts’ Documentary Photography Fellowships along with several essays on photography in the regular part of the magazine.