Allied Media Conference Fundraising
I’m very excited to announce that I will be participating in the upcoming 16th edition of the Allied Media Conference in Detroit this summer. It’s an event that I’ve heard a lot of great things about, but haven’t had the opportunity to participate in until now. In their own words:
“The AMC is a collaborative laboratory of media-based organizing strategies for transforming our world. The AMC is a network of networks – social justice organizers, community technologists, transformative artists, educators, entrepreneurs, and many others — all using media in innovative ways.”
On the invitation of Toronto-based designer and community organiser Una Lee, I’ll be hosting a session entitled Designing Cultures of Resistance as part of the Future Design Lab. Though, I’m still working out all the details, what I want to address with participants is the ways in which (graphic) design can contribute to community building, beyond its role as a direct communications tool. In other words, how does design operate in affective and strategic ways to build solidarity within and between communities of resistance?
I’ll be writing more about the AMC, and my participation within it, soon. But for now, I wanted to humbly ask for a little grassroots support in order to get me and our crew of artist/activists from Montreal to Detroit. The Future Design Lab has set up a simple fundraising page, please check it out, and if you can, spare a little change for social change.
Donate to the Future Design Lab.
Beautiful, abstract, print works by Berlin-based designer and printmaker Damien Tran. After all the language stuff I’ve been playing with, I think I want the next zine to feel like this.
Check out his work here.
Four Minutes to Midnight: Issue Thirteen
“The word is the canary, and its feathers are falling out.”
After an extended hiatus, Four Minutes to Midnight returns with our thirteenth issue, a lovingly produced edition of typography and poetics, photography and collage, design polemics and radical politics, paper and ink. Thematically, the issue emerges out of our experience of the Québec Student Strike, but is not specifically “about” it, acting more as a reflection on 10 years of community organising, designing and publishing, making music, and strolling through gentrifying neighbourhoods in opposition to neoliberal capitalism.
The issue features visual art, writing and design from a diverse host of local and international contributors, including the Dutch design studio Experimental Jetset, performance artist and author Jacob Wren, Montreal photographer Vo Thien Viet, Toronto writer and editor Hillary Rexe, and the Montreal artist and collagist Madame Gilles.
Issue 13 now in production
The long awaited (in my mind at least) thirteenth issue of Four Minutes to Midnight is in the final stages of production. The screen-printed covers have been delivered to the printers, Kata Soho, and they’ve just finished the interior printing on their end. Next steps; cutting down the sheets, collating the pages, binding, and trimming to the final book block. Exciting stuff!
I’ll be posting the details of the issue itself when it’s ready, but for now I wanted to share some in process images and announce the upcoming launch party. We’re excited to be launching the issue as part of the Howl Arts Festival, Tuesday, April 29th at le Cagibi, with musical performances by Loosestrife, Stefan Christoff and our own John “Triangles” Stuart. An inaugural festival of art and revolution seems to be the perfect context to bring this zine/book into the world, especially considering how Four Minutes to Midnight acted as a touchstone to Stefan and I forming the Howl Arts Collective all those years ago. This has been a very long time coming, so we’re hoping you can make it out to celebrate with us.
RSVP on Facebook here.
Howl! Arts Festival
I’m very excited to announce the upcoming Howl! Arts Festival—les voix survolent la ville, a celebration of art and revolution. This first edition, taking place over 6 days at the end of April, brings together a host of local artists and events committed to the deepening of community engagement and grassroots activism, with a focus on the struggles of First Nations, Inuit and Metis.
The festival opens with a benefit concert for Missing Justice featuring Odaya, Sarah Pagé and AurorA, followed the next evening by Regards sur le 7eme feu. This 11 musician ensemble performance presents a conceptual work envisioned and composed by Xarah Dion and Stefan Christoff, exploring issues around the future of the North. Other events include a fundraising concert for those arrested under the unjust Montreal bylaw P6 during (and after) the Quebec student strike of 2012, a screening of Alanis’ Obomsawin’s documentary film Hi-Ho Mistahey!, and a panel discussion on the relationship between art and gentrification.
The festival closes with the launch of the 13th issue of Four Minutes to Midnight, which has been almost two years in the making. Much more on that very soon!
The visuals and poster for the festival were created by LOKi design, and printed by Chris at la Presse du chat perdu. The graphic approach was equally inspired by the explosive force of Vorticism, the imagery of a dense city seen from above, and a personal attempt to work with abstraction in a politically coherent way.
More details for the festival on the Howl! website, and on facebook here.
Colloque Recherche-Creation: Demo or Die
I recently presented a talk at UQAM’s Centre des Sciences as part of a conference on the state of Research-Creation. I was invited as a member of Artivistic, but I have to admit, I felt a bit out of my league amongst seasoned academics and artists, addressing a subject I wasn’t sure I quite understood properly. Nonetheless, I tackled it from my own perspective, presenting Artivistic’s Promiscuous Infrastrcutures project, and was happy to contribute to the more action-oriented panel Demo or Die.
You can view the video documentation of the panel below (my talk starts 29 minutes in):
Many thanks to Gisèle Trudel for organising the panel and inviting me to rpesent, and many thanks to my fellow panelists, Mel Hogan, Alexandre Castonguay, Sandeep Bhagwati, and Sally-Jane Norman.
Contre la Charte des valeurs
Working with the FARD (Féministes anti-racistes détonant.e.s) collective, I designed a series of typographic posters in opposition to the proposed Quebec Charter of Values and its inherent racist agenda. Produced as part of the latest issue of the .dpi journal, the goal of the series is to render public opposition more visible within the city’s cultural venues and in the streets.
And We Made The Room Shine
It’s been a while since I’ve posted anything here as things have been very busy at the studio! But this beautiful video from La Blogothèque showcasing intimate performances by Constellation artists showed up in my feed, and I felt compelled to share it. Enjoy!
* Resistance *
Jack Allen pointed me towards this beautiful visual essay by designer and artist Paul Soulellis. In it he narrates and argues for a counterpractice of design that I can very much sympathise with. It’s an inspirational read for the new year, and will surely help to guide how I approach my projects in 2014.
Read it here.