Copy Machine Manifestos: Artists Who Make Zines
LTTR (Ginger Brooks Takahashi, K8 Hardy, Every Ocean Hughes and Ulrike Müller), LTTR, no. 2, Listen Translate Translate Record, August 2003. Collection of Philip Aarons and Shelley Fox Aarons. Photo: David Vu.

Copy Machine Manifestos: Artists Who Make Zines

Vancouver Art Gallery, Vancouver, BC - To Sep 22

by Michael Turner

Organized by and travelling from the Brooklyn Museum, Copy Machine Manifestos bills itself as “the first exhibition dedicated to the rich history of five decades of artists’ zines produced in North America.” Curating this exhibition is a multidisciplinary team that includes Branden W. Joseph, Drew Sawyer, Marcello Gabriel Yáñez and Imani Williford, who, using photos of zine makers, framed pages, vitrines, projections, and a DIY production and distribution play station, have artfully divided the exhibition into thematic sections.

Those interested in “The Punk Explosion, 1975–1990” will have access to Candy Parker’s Dr. Smith, no. 1 (1984), while those curious about “Queer & Feminist Undergrounds, 1987–2000” can revel in Vaginal Davis’ Yes, Ms. Davis (1994). Artists known more singularly, if not ineffably, include Miranda July and Raymond Pettibon. For those interested in the zines of local artists, the VAG has created a reading room that includes the work of Ho Tam, Whess Harman, Erica Wilk, Cole Pauls, Cheryl Hamilton, Lisa g Nielsen and Liz Knox. The VAG reading room is “framed” by an artwork created by local artist and zine maker Marlene Yuen.

Accompanying the exhibition is the first comprehensive publication devoted to the exploration of zines. Co-published by Phaidon Press, the book includes over 800 images of zines and related works in other media. In addition to texts by the curators are specially commissioned essays by Gwen Allen, Julia Bryan-Wilson, Tavia Nyong’o, Alexis Salas and Mimi Thi Nguyen, on top of biographies of participating artists.

Please note that both the exhibition and the publication contain graphic content. Viewer discretion is advised.

Zine nights June 14 and July 12, with various events

Share this: