During the 1960s and 1970s, magazines became an important new site of artistic practice, functioning as an alternative exhibition space for the dematerialized practices of conceptual art. Artists created works expressly for these mass-produced, hand-editioned pages, using the ephemerality and the materiality of the magazine to challenge the conventions of both artistic medium and gallery. In Artists’ Magazines, Gwen Allen looks at the most important of these magazines in their heyday (the 1960s to the 1980s) and compiles a comprehensive, illustrated directory of hundreds of others.
Among the magazines Allen examines are Aspen (1965–1971), a multimedia magazine in a box—issues included Super-8 films, flexi-disc records, critical writings, artists’ postage stamps, and collectible chapbooks; Avalanche (1970-1976), which expressed the countercultural character of the emerging SoHo art community through its interviews and artist-designed contributions; and Real Life (1979-1994), published by Thomas Lawson and Susan Morgan as a forum for the Pictures generation. These and the other magazines Allen examines expressed their differences from mainstream media in both form and content: they cast their homemade, do-it-yourself quality against the slickness of an Artforum, and they created work that defied the formalist orthodoxy of the day. Artists’ Magazines, featuring abundant color illustrations of magazine covers and content, offers an essential guide to a little-explored medium.
About the Author
Gwen Allen is Associate Professor of Art History at San Francisco State University.
Table of Contents
- Artists’ Magazines
- Artists’ Magazines
- Massachusetts Institute of Technology
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- Library of Congress Cataloging-in-Publication Data
- Allen, Gwen, 1971–
- Artists’ magazines : an alternative space for art / Gwen Allen.
- p. cm.
- Includes bibliographical references and index.
- ISBN 978-0-262-01519-6 (hardcover : alk. paper) 1. Art, Modern—20th century—Periodicals. 2. Art, Modern—20th century—Historiography. I. Title.
- N6490.A58 2011
- 10 9 8 7 6 5 4 3 2 1
- Acknowledgments vii
- Introduction 1
- 1 This Is Not to Be Looked At 13
- Artforum in the 1960s and 1970s
- 2 The Magazine as a Medium 43
- Aspen , 1965–1971
- 3 Art On and Off the Page 69
- 0 to 9 , 1967–1969
- 4 An Artists’ Magazine
- Avalanche , 1970–1976
- 5 The Magazine as an Alternative Space 121
- Art-Rite , 1973–1978
- 6 The Magazine as Mirror 147
- FILE , 1972–1989
- 7 Artists’ Magazines in the 1980s 175
- Real Life , 1979–1994
- 8 Epilogue: International Activity 201
- Interfunktionen , 1968–1975
- Appendix: A Compendium of Artists’ 227 Magazines from 1945 to 1989
- Notes 315
- Selected Bibliography 347
- The MIT Press
- Cambridge, Massachusetts
- London, England 351
- An Alternative Space for Art
- Gwen Allen
“…amongst the most thorough discursions into the influence of little magazines upon late-twentieth-century visual culture...it is great to read for its well-researched history and analysis of a period when little magazines were testing the waters of art and publishing.” —Eye
"[An] intently researched valentine to vintage small-press heroics."—Martin Herbert, Art Review
Honorable Mention, 2011 American Publishers Award for Professional and Scholarly Excellence (PROSE Award) in Art History & Criticism, presented by the Professional and Scholarly Publishing Division of the Association of American Publishers