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Peeks and Piques! Thirty-Five years in Partnership

By Raymond J. Steiner
ART TIMES Summer 2016

Thirty-Five years in Partnership with Cornelia Seckel, thirty-two of which spent in founding, publishing and building ART TIMES has been, for both of us, a heady, mind-expanding and extremely educational experience. The people we’ve met, the trips around the world — both the anxieties and accolades — all have enriched our lives, ourselves. Whatever my contributions, it was Cornelia’s vision, her fearlessness, her will to make ART TIMES a reality that not only launched but kept alive our desire to foster the arts in all its guises. Yes, I was writing — some thirty odd years before I met Cornelia — but my poetry, my essays, my stories and musings would in all likelihood still be tucked away in drawers, between the pages of the books of other, braver souls who sought public print, in nooks and crannies far from the eyes of others — or simply scattered to the four winds as I roamed from place to place. When we first met, I had free-lanced a few artist’s profiles for other publications, but was quickly discouraged by seeing my, more often than not, badly — even incorrectly — edited essays in print. The ex-English teacher in me shuddered — even more so when not only bad writing but mis-spelling of my subject’s name was published under my name! My file drawers filled up even more. Then along came Ms. Seckel. And, in less than 4 years came: “If you’re unhappy with what they do to your writing, why don’t we publish our own newspaper? You be the editor and if there’s any mistakes they’ll be yours!” Off to the races. Of course, there were naysayers, but Cornelia has never been able to hear “no” (you might check out my profile on her that I wrote in March 2012 and online at A former teacher herself, a consultant, a consummate and tireless networker, a career counselor (who took her own advice) not only absorbed what she needed to know and do in just a few months, but also mocked-up a front page and got enough advertising in one month to begin our ‘own’ newspaper in July of 1984. Whew! I managed to keep up with this human dynamo with whom I found myself in partnership (my friend Heinrich Jarczyk, a Cologne-based German etcher/painter about whom I have written some articles and a couple of books, refers to her as “Super Woman”!), but lately have had to curtail my going on press-trips with her, visiting our European friends, attending art openings, celebratory dinners, parties — pretty much limited to my study and home as ailments and age deprive me of my ‘get up and go’. However, I’ll continue to keep my hand in as Editor and artwriter as this, our 314th issue after 32+ years of publishing, will sadly be our last printed issue as we (or, I should say, Cornelia) moves ART TIMES to a fully-online presence. Yes, like many other newspapers, we have succumbed to the pressures of cyberspace. Oy! Another adventure I have to get used to! Meanwhile, please keep in touch by visiting us at for new writings, videos, and resources.

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