13th STATE is a blog covering art, design, aesthetics, and visual culture, focusing on (but not limited to) artists and artworks in and from New England.
Currently it’s run entirely by myself, Alexander Castro. I’m a writer who’s worn every adjacent label—critic, journalist, reporter—since I began reporting professionally in 2014. I’ve written several hundred articles for newspapers and magazines, including reviews, interviews and features, in my seven years of experience. Some notable folks I’ve interviewed include Art Spiegelman, Cassandra Peterson (aka Elvira), and Marc Brown of Arthur fame.
The world of gallery exhibits and expertly-hung painting seems pretty distant from my undergraduate beat at Roger Williams University: drug culture in Rhode Island, which culminated in 60-page longform piece on ketamine in the Ocean State. Honestly though, it wasn’t hard to transpose the two topics. My interests in the illicit and the offbeat, the peripheral and the obsessive, all reappeared in the altered states reachable through art. Theory and philosophy, the other chief concerns of my undergraduate days, were also present in art, and at supersized proportions.
With 13th STATE I continue the unconventional perspective of my earlier work, unfettered now by prior editorial constraints, and marry it to the content, structure and maturity of my professional writing. This project builds on all the knowledge and connections I gained during my career and will open up (or so I hope) a space for distinctive criticism and reportage that isn’t available elsewhere in New England.
The site is pretty bare bones at the moment as I schedule and write more posts, but if you’re interested in reading more of the many issues to come, click the “Subscribe” button at the bottom of any page and you can sign up for for a free (or paid!) subscription. Or, if you’d like to share some funds or tip me without subscribing, you can visit Paypal.me.
If you’re an artist living in New England/Mid-Atlantic region and you’re interested in being interviewed or profiled, or having an exhibit reviewed, feel free to contact me at ohnocastro [at] gmail.com.