FROM KOLAJ #20
The People That Make This Magazine a Joy to Publish
This issue of Kolaj Magazine bookends our fifth year of publishing the magazine. In that time, we published dozens of artist portfolios and many book reviews, articles and profiles. We have tried, as best we could, to take a global view of collage. To us, that means, in part, geography. We have sought out collage from every continent. But that approach also means being open to investigating the idea of collage; its role in Modernism; and its role in contemporary art. We have endeavoured to be open to collage in all its forms–analogue and digital, assemblage and photomontage, painting and video, and so on. In the five years we have published the magazine, we learned a great deal. If I were asked to summarize, I would say this: We have much more to learn.
In the five years we have published the magazine, we learned a great deal. If I were asked to summarize, I would say this: We have much more to learn.
In Kolaj #20, we look back at the role of collage in establishing the “look” of California’s punk scene. We investigate how a Montreal street artist is using glitch collage to intervene on the landscape and to heal herself. We remember a collagist who showed us the silliness of science and we share Hope Kroll’s journey as a collage artist. We look to the future possibilities for the medium as expressed by Duncan Poulton’s digital and video collage. The magazine, on firm footing, is laying an editorial legacy that we hope will continue to grow and evolve. And still, we have so much more to cover.
Art is at a unique juncture. It is both flourishing and under siege. Market prices for visual art continue to peak year after year and yet most working artists suffer in poverty. The gallery system is breaking down. Art fairs are not long behind them. Media only talks about art in terms of money or scandal. Society is flooded with images, so many images, and yet our ability to read them, to notice them, to be impacted by them diminishes as time passes. I cannot confidently say that the world in which we live values art. And yet, for me, art offers so many wonderful experience and answers. When I read a good collage, I am often struck by the emotional depth, wit, and insight it delivers. Some people study physics to look into the eye of god. I look at art to look into the eye of humanity.
From organizing exhibitions and collaborations to simply continuing to make incredible art that I am proud to include in the magazine, it is these talented and dedicated people that make this magazine a joy to publish and make me personally want to do better.
As we move forward publishing Kolaj Magazine, my hope for the magazine is that it goes deeper into the medium than we have in the past. With each submission, each writer assignment, my mantra is, Why does this matter? Why should our readers take note of this? This will continue to be the mission of the magazine. I also hope we get more practical and ask, How does the art world work better for all artists and not simply the upper echelon of producers? How do artists cultivate a more general audience? The medium of collage has real challenges within an art world that tends to dismiss it, that shows a poor understanding of it. I hope we continue to raise critical issues, particularly as they related to how collage is exhibited and collected. Collage’s historiography is in dire need of a rethink.
What gives me hope, what drives this magazine is wonderful community of collage artists around the world. From organizing exhibitions and collaborations to simply continuing to make incredible art that I am proud to include in the magazine, it is these talented and dedicated people that make this magazine a joy to publish and make me personally want to do better. Thank you for an incredible five years.