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May 23 – Re-New[s]ing the news Exhibition

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Chronicle Zine: Re-new[s]ing the news

An exhibition of artists’ zines based on the Toowoomba Chronicle newspaper

Exhibition story in the Chronicle Newspaper May 25

http://www.thechronicle.com.au/story/2011/05/25/chronicle-artists-toowoomba-tafe-students

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On Saturday 5 March 2011, nine artists all bought a copy of the Chronicle newspaper. Their challenge was to read, interpret and make an artists’ statement by reading between the lines.

In doing so they find a place where their artistic view collides with the truth of the newspaper. Now these re-used newspapers are presented to the public for viewing at an exhibition in the Flexilearn Centre (library) at the Southern Queensland Institute of TAFE (SQIT).

The publication form chosen by the artists to present their statements is the informal pamphlet format commonly known as the ‘Zine’. This ubiquitous newspaper form has its origins in the ‘free’ press and personal expression.

The contributing artists are all art photography students from SQIT and Teacher Doug Spowart set the project as part of course work.

“The zine task has resulted in some insightful commentary about Toowoomba. Interestingly, whilst each artist made their own statement about news items, in many ways they have retold the news with their own spin on it,” Mr Spowart said.

Curator of the exhibition, SQIT Artist in Residence Lorelei Clark describes the works as almost anything you can imagine.

“The Chronicle newspaper has been cut-up, ripped and torn, spray painted, words cut out and reassembled, with some works having a ransom note look about them,” Ms Clark said,

Curator Lorelei Clark and Beverley Bloxham

The exhibition was opened by local arts identity Beverley Bloxham who said

As the name implies, the brief for this project was to take back copies of Toowoomba’s Chronicle as the source material to creatively refashion it with new geometries and to invest it with new meaning as artist’s zines.

According to Wikipedia, “a zine (an abbreviation of fanzine, or magazine) is most commonly a small circulation publication of original or appropriated texts and images. More broadly, the term encompasses any self-published work of minority interest usually reproduced via photocopier.

A popular definition includes that circulation must be 5,000 or less, although in practice the significant majority are produced in editions of less than 1,000, and profit is not the primary intent of publication.”

This exhibition gives me a giggle in choice of source material:  repurposing an ephemeral object: ie: yesterday’s news, as a creative exercise.  It is many moons since I was so engaged in reading the Chronicle, having decided long ago that it was not the most efficient use of my news gathering time since I became a devotee of Radio National & SBS. However, I do dip into it from time to time to get my fix of local news.

But here, fresh from the minds and hands of creative people, is another reason the read the print emanating from our local daily purveyor of news which had its beginnings as a four penny weekly on July 4, 1861 in a coachbuilder’s shop in James Street with founder Darius Hunt.

The newsprint, however, in these artists’ hands, has been sliced, spliced, torn and shorn, with realigned and juxtaposed journalism,  hacked (not hackneyed) headlines, dubious by-lines, reinvented meaning, and re-contextualised content  in a manner unintended by the founder and original authors.

The exhibition - including the 'Make your own Zine' workspace

The zines are available for viewing from May 24 to June 5, 2011 at SQIT Flexilearn Centre in A Block at 100 Bridge Street. Open Monday and Wednesday 8am to 6pm, Tuesday to Thursday from 8am to 5pm and Friday from 8am to 4pm.

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Written by Cooper+Spowart

May 26, 2011 at 12:23 pm

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