The past few weeks we’ve had the awesome opportunity to partner with several projects, institutions, and events. Here is a quick roundup of what we’ve been up to. We would love to hear what other partnerships you’d like to see us pursue!
First up: On Sept. 15th we were psyched to partner with the PoC Zine Project and Alana Kumbier at Wellesley College for a fundraiser to support the Race Riot Tour. The PoCZP’s mission is to “make it easier for POC zine fans and their supporters to find a diverse selection of zines made by POC.” We were able to raise gas money to support the tour, feature zines made by local zinesters of color, and will feature an exhibit of PoC zines at the end of the tour. These folks are doing really important work – here’s how YOU can support the Race Riot tour RIGHT NOW.
Next, we partnered with the Boston Comics Roundtable to put on a panel discussion with local comics artists and zinesters in advance of this year’s Massachusetts Independent Comics Expo (MICE). The theme of the panel was the intersections between indie comics and zines. Brian Connolly, Alizeé de Pin, Chelsea Dirck, Lily Richeson, and Marissa Falco discussed zine aesthetics, the difference between zine fairs and comic fests, swapping culture and more.
And last but not least, last week we partnered with the Isabella Stuart Gardner Museum for a day-long drop in workshop putting zines in conversation with archival materials from the museum’s collection. Here were some of our prompts:
Personal Zines are one of the largest category at the Papercut Zine Library. They often include voices that are not present, and whose stories are not frequently told, in mainstream print media. This might include anyone from young people, differently abled individuals, anarchists, people of color, to urban substitute teachers. Isabella Gardner’s diaries document the voice of an educated and influential woman at a time when women’s voices were not frequently recorded. These forms of ephemeral print media (zines, diaries) become part of history when we recognize that they give us access to voices we might not find in books and newspapers.
If you were to create a personal zine, what would you share? What would you want visitors to the Gardner Museum in 100 years to know about you? What could you fit onto one page?
How would you describe your trip to the Gardner Museum to someone in another part of the country? Another part of the world? What would you draw and what words would you use to describe it? What would you share about Boston or your home town that your readers might not know?
Isabella Gardner had an eclectic circle of acquaintances including artists, politicians, world travelers, and writers. She corresponded with them frequently, and her letters provide us with a glimpse into her thoughts, dialogues, and exchanges of ideas. Zines often use the mail, and mail art, as a way to foster connection and expression through pen pals, political letter writing campaigns, or communication to spaces that can’t easily be physically accessed (such as prisons).
Make a piece of mail art to include in a zine. Isabella Gardner often wrote to great thinkers of her time, or those she met while traveling. Make a piece of mail to send to an artist or writer who has inspired you, someone in a country you might never visit, or a place in America you might never go.