One of my favorite cartoonists is Hugh MacLeod, who pens The Gaping Void (there is a widget in the left column of this blog that runs his cartoons.) Hugh wonders in a blog conversation with Seth Godin, is "quite surprised that very few of the prominent bloggers out there are in the 'Arts'. Most of the focus of the discussion and a continuation of it by TDavid, who picked up on this, focuses on novelists.
Interesting. I don't have an answer to Hugh's question per se. But my thinking is that most of those in the arts, (I consider myself in those ranks) aren't on the "prominent" radar because most of the folks who drive the prominence factor (I'll avoid the navel gazing self reverential euphemism) are focused on issues other than the arts.
Also, I think, like Hugh, bloggers in the arts are out there creating, but unlike Hugh, don't focus some of their creations around the Internet. Those who blog, share their thoughts, (sometimes about their art, sometimes not) and to my reading, that sharing is split between very personal observances, and also blogging as another medium of creation. Even when they do focus a bit on the carnival that is the Internet, (here are a couple of examples of plays about blogging and the Internet that I've linked to) the radar seems to pass them quietly by, and I think that, unfortunately, no different than how current society views the arts as a disposable and transitory resource. (When we value film by the box office more than the film itself, it is no wonder Hollywood is reeling.) Sure, those with pre-blog prominence, like Scott Adams, and those who gain prominence, like Hugh, grab attention. So, here's a a hypothesis. If Monet, Manet, Degas, and Picasso, created in a world with blogging and created the same art, who would have gotten the most hits? Would it have mattered? I doubt it. Most artists, toil happily and scrape by in their own little creative worlds, not really concerned about the "prominence" factor within the blogosphere. Why should they? Tough enough being an artist in this day and age as it is.