To Live and Write in L.A.
Since 1980, Christopher Knight, a happy transplant from the chilly Northeast, has been covering the art scene in Los Angeles. In the past 27 years, as art critic for the Los Angeles Times, he has earned the Frank Jewett Mather Award for art criticism, been nominated three times for a Pulitzer, and appeared on “60 Minutes” and NPR. “Skepticism is my job,” he tells us, and explains his biases against performance art and in favor of painting and how he works as a “journalistic art critic.”
He got his start with an early review dissing a show about the Muppets at a local museum, and has over the decades watched L.A. grow into a major international art metropolis. A little more than a year ago, when the new Whitney Museum of American Art opened in New York, he locked horns with the powers-that-be over a defamatory piece of wall text, and he tells us about his efforts to set the record straight.
One of the most down-to-earth critics working today, Knight offers his insights into the pressures and pleasures of his long-running beat in the City of Angels.