After 13 years of publishing in print and online, The Lumière Reader is taking a break.
For reasons both personal and financial, the site will cease publishing its regular mix of film criticism and arts journalism from March 31, 2016. Only the satellite site for video content and design services, video.lumiere.net.nz, will remain active as a platform for our core creative team to develop essay films and digital documentaries.
While we can’t say when or even if the site will come out of hibernation, we can assure readers it will remain online as a resource for as long as we can pay the bills. Rescuing eight years of publishing on our old site is another matter—broken and in disrepair, merging it with the current site can’t happen without financial assistance and a lot of elbow grease.
If preserving this legacy sounds worthwhile to you, or if you value the writing we’ve published and want to show your appreciation, donations are gratefully accepted via our PayPal account. (Thank you to those who’ve contributed to date—your generosity has already allowed us to partially rebuild the site.) This is the first time we’ve asked for help from the public, and even raising a small amount will go a long way towards future-proofing the website and building a better case for traditional arts funding of this and other projects.
From day one, The Lumière Reader has been a labour of love. In the beginning, it was established as a place for serious film criticism in New Zealand. Then it grew to encompass the wider arts scene, curating everything from essays, to long-form interviews, to poetry, to documentary filmmaking. More recently, it narrowed its focus to artists and practitioners, not merely through critique but also advocacy and conversation, particularly around collaboration, creative process, and what it takes to make art in this country. Through all of this, it remained ad-free and subsisted on the smell of an oily rag.
Under the volunteer model the site is run, it should have folded long ago—and yet it has endured since 2003 precisely because of its long roll call of contributors. We hope you’ll continue to follow these talented people elsewhere and appreciate their work as much as we have, whether they are writing for other publications or practicing as artists, novelists, poets, musicians, journalists, theatremakers, photographers, illustrators, and filmmakers. If you’d like to work with any of us, please get in touch.
And finally, thank you to the readers for sharing and supporting what we do. You’ve helped us achieve a longer innings than most, from a time when there was a paucity of arts and culture websites in New Zealand, to the present, where the local online publishing landscape is now livelier than ever.
The Lumière Reader