The year was 2005 and … after going silent for six months, 15 Bytes was resurrected!
Here, to the best of our recollection, is what happened:
In the summer of 2004, just shy of three years after its inception, 15 Bytes went dark.
Or, not exactly dark — the website, after all, was still up — but 15 Bytes stopped publishing. It was becoming too large a project, our attempts to solicit support from our readers came up short, and, well there were some other distractions (see an attempt at an explanation here).
Then, sometime in the fall of 2004 or maybe early 2005, Laura Durham, who was a visual arts project manager for the Utah Arts Council/ Utah Division of Arts & Museums, was holding a professional development workshop. To the inquiry as to what the community needed, some in the audience were like, “What we really need is a magazine about the arts…”
We weren’t there, so this is all based on hearsay, but from what we heard, a slightly dumbfounded Laura tried her best to speak in a measured tone when she responded, “You guys had that. Shawn Rossiter was doing that with 15 Bytes. But you didn’t support it. So he stopped.”
Which was kind of cool.
So we gave it another try, beginning in February 2005.
And it’s a good thing we came back, because there was still plenty happening in Utah’s art scene:
Like Saltgrass Printmakers, started by Stefanie Dykes and Sandy Brunvand in a Sugar House cottage, and still going strong 15 years later.
Kimball Art Center’s celebration of Latino artists, Arte Latino, began a discussion about representation that continues today.
Cowan Gallery opened in Springville.
The Central Utah Art Center opened in Ephraim.
We bolstered our efforts with some new contributors, including Frank McEntire, who reviewed Hyunmee Lee and JinMan Jo in Logan …
… Christopher Wilson, who covered an exhibit of female students of Robert Henri at BYU Museum of Art …
Brian Christensen, who reviewed Alice Neel show …
… and Geoff Wichert, with a review of Brian Christensen, began a relationship with us that 384 articles later has truly transformed our magazine.
We were just in time for Downy Doxey’s exhibit at SLC’s Avenues Library, which Laura Durham, always willing to back up what she calls for, covered with a profile of the artist.
And we began lots of new initiatives:
Bill Fulton began what became one of our most popular series, with a photo essay on Francis Zimbeaux’s studio space.
What has become our Art Lake City map was begun with an article on Gilgal Gardens.
We began our Art Professional Profiles with Ruth Lubbers.
And, of course, we continued to cover exciting exhibitions by artists like Adam Bateman, John Bell, Holly Mae Pendergast, Lisa Nichols, Max Grundy, Gloria Montgomery, Frank McEntire, Diana Garff Gardiner.
UTAH’S ART MAGAZINE SINCE 2001, 15 Bytes is published by Artists of Utah, a 501 (c) 3 non-profit organization headquartered in Salt Lake City, Utah.