Longitudes

'THE LAST EVENING SUN' AVAILABLE NOW! #7 issue of the 10 Latitudes-edited newspapers for 'The Last Newspaper' exhibition, New Museum

Issue 7: 'The Last Evening Sun'
(READ IT ON ISSUU)

Table of contents:

Cover:
'Without Rain Partial Nights Aerial Days', a special cover by Julia Rometti & Victor Costales (continues page 12)
Feature: Artist and writer Kathleen Ritter misreads the incomprehensible newspapers of Mark Manders
Focus: Simone Menegoi on Pavimento, Tautologia (1967) by Luciano Fabro; plus notes on 'Fabricating Fabro' by the New Museum Chief Preparator, Shannon Bowser
Special pull-out poster: Installation pictures and a checklist of 'The Last Newspaper' and New Museum's Facebook fans and Twitter followers reporting a sentence of personal news
Feature: 'Thomas Hirschhorn ♥ Queens' Charity Scribner on Thomas Hirschhorn
Feature: 'Red and black all over, again' Irina Chernyakova follows the design and production of 'The Last Evening Sun'
Focus: Inaba/C-Lab's 'Cloudy with a chance of Certainty'
Media Habits: Michael Rakowitz
The Next Newspaper (Profiling the organizations, projects, initiatives and individuals redefining ink-and-paper news):
WikiLeaks
Dirt Sheet column:
Janine Armin at the Taipei and the Gwangju Biennials
Picture Agent-Our singular picture agency: Maria Loboda 

100 years Ago…: 'Palestine Daily Herald' (Palestine, Texas) 1902-1949, November 17, 1910
Cartoon:
'The Woods: Flavor of the month' by Francesc Ruiz
'Advertising Department':
Ester Partegàs







EXCLUSIVE CONTENT!



Joshua Edwards, Exhibitions Manager at the New Museum, mops the floor and lays the previous day’s New York Times
to create Fabro’s Pavimento, Tautologia (1967). Photos: Latitudes


FLOOR TAUTOLOGY 
Curator and writer Simone Menegoi on Luciano Fabro’s ‘Pavimento–Tautologia’, the earliest work in ‘The Last Newspaper’

My grandfather had a sports car, a Lancia Fulvia coupé. He always kept it polished and would only use it on certain occasions. He was so afraid of getting it dirty that he never took off the plastic wrapping that covered the seats when he bought it, even after years of use. His zeal was not particularly unusual in Italy those years (the 1970s), as many people left on the protective plastic film that brand new sofas or chairs would have when purchased. This habit came from two decades earlier, when memories of war and poverty were still lurking. The first consumer goods purchases were the result of laborious saving, so things had to last for as long as possible.

Pavimento–Tautologia (Floor–Tautology) by Luciano Fabro is based on the same logic that drove people like my grandfather to keep the car seats wrapped: a logic that gave up the pleasure of being able to touch the leather or the fabric of the seat in exchange for the satisfaction of knowing that, beneath the protective plastic, the surface was kept intact. In Fabro’s work, a portion of the floor (sometimes an entire surface) is cleaned, polished with wax and then covered with newspapers. Beyond the ephemeral protection of paper – “a cheap and lightweight Carl Andre” as Jörg Heiser has written – the floor disappears, we cannot appreciate its lustre, but we know it’s being kept immaculate, and we know this will be preserved, even if we walk on the papers.

In 1978, a decade after presenting the work for the first time in Turin, Fabro wrote "in my town... the floor is cleaned and then covered, at least for the first day, with papers, newspapers or rags to avoid getting it dirty... on that first day, in those two or three days that it was covered with paper, no one saw the floor clean. This particular way of accounting for the labour and its preservation, not for ostentation but as a private affair, seeks to ensure that the effort made doesn’t end up in anything too quick.”


Newspaper placed on top of the mopped floor. Photo: Latitudes

The comparison between the newspapers on the floor and plastic on the new car seats, however, applies only within certain constraints. There is a fundamental difference between the work required for you to buy a car and the work involved in cleaning the floor. In Italy, in those years, the second had a clear gender dimension: it was a domestic job regarded as part of the housewife’s duties. Fabro was fully aware of this and it is no accident that he presented Pavimento for the first time in a gallery inside a private apartment, a space that preserved a domestic environment. Fabro was also aware of the position he was adopting as a male artist presenting it as a piece. The sculptor sided with the housewife, with her modest and under appreciated task that was repeated daily. "We experience seeing our work destroyed daily" Carla Lonzi, a friend and admirer of Fabro, wrote in 1970 in the Manifesto di rivolta femminile (Manifesto of feminist revolt), a key text of Italian feminism.

Forty years onwards, what is the effect of Pavimento in the context of an American museum, one so different from when the work was presented for the first time? Is it still effective? The vernacular appearance of the work, its provincial and quotidian dimension is probably hard to grasp today, particularly outside Italy. The political aspect – gender politics – is certainly less visible now than it was in the late 1960s, although its historical importance cannot be questioned. Pavimento remains current with the idea of "care", caring as an essential dimension of the relationship with a work. Pavimento consists only of this: in taking care. "Every experience related to this handmade piece is linked to maintenance," Fabro wrote in 1967. A piece that is not to be contemplated, but to be done. Its only legitimate spectator is the one who realised it and looked after it. In short, perhaps it is its only spectator. (Since to the rest of us, the polished floor remains invisible.) Fabro referred to caring in a material sense, as a symbol of all the other ‘cures’ that a piece would require: of a critical or political kind, for instance. In this sense, Pavimento was for him a sort of manifesto, as he stated that a work can never be taken for granted, but must be constantly redefined, reiterated, and defended. In its ‘infrathin’ layer of paper and floor wax, Pavimento–Tautologia guards a surprising depth of meaning.

– Translated from Italian by Mariana Cánepa Luna


(sidebar) FABRICATING FABRO


Installation view of Luciano Fabro's Pavimento-Tautologia (1967) on the 4th floor of the New Museum.
Courtesy of the Luciano Fabro Estate. Photo courtesy: Katie Sokolor / Gothamist.

Shannon Bowser: "I've been installing the piece every weekday since the exhibition opened in October. The layout uses all the pages of an issue yet the arrangement can be a little haphazard. We can lay the pages facing different directions and it doesn't need to be too precise or follow a set dimension, even though the barriers that surround the piece help as a guide to square it up to the wall. I throw down extra sheets here and there but it usually works out to be the same size each day overall no matter how many pages there were in the previous day's issue.

We have a specific subscription for the New York Times for this piece. Every morning I pick up a copy to keep it for the following day and I have with me the one from yesterday ready to go. I find myself reading the news while installing the work and so sometimes I have to pause to read properly, and I end up finding out about stuff that I would normally wouldn't. I wish I had time to read the New York Times every day, because there are so many good articles. Sometimes I flip through pages when I'm laying them down, so if there's an annoying full page with glaring women facing upwards I can choose to turn it around. It's really interesting to see yesterday's newspaper all laid out on the floor and realize the actual physical size of it, because you cannot really read the New York Times on the subway for example, because it's so big – it's so impractical!

Doing it definitely adds time to my morning routine so I've been coming in early every morning to be able to install the Fabro and then get everything else sorted as all these shows require a lot of maintenance. But it has been really interesting, I definitely feel like I'm participating in an artwork."

Watch a 'making of' video of the piece here.

Shannon Bowser (Chief Preparator) installs Pavimento–Tautologia on Wednesdays, Thursday and Fridays.
Victoria Manning (Registrar) takes charge on Saturdays and Joshua Edwards (Exhibition Manager) on Sundays.

'THE LAST OBSERVER' AVAILABLE NOW! #6 issue of the 10 Latitudes-edited newspapers for 'The Last Newspaper' exhibition, New Museum

Issue 6: 'The Last Observer'
(READ IT ON ISSUU)

Table of contents:

Cover: '
Truth Study?', Wolfgang Tillmans' 'Truth Study Center (NY)', 2010
Feature:
London correspondent Lorena Muñoz-Alonso meets Wolfgang Tillmans whose table top installation 'Truth Study Center' is featured in 'The Last Newspaper'
Focus:
Greg Barton & Collin Munn pay a visit to Judith Bernstein, who presents 'The Last Newspaper' visitors with two works from 1967
Picture Agent - Our singular picture agency:
Renzo Martens
Media Habits:
City-as-School Students
Feature:
Curator and writer Manuel Segade – who opened his Facebook account four years ago and now has 872 friends– comments on the profile of the 'click self'
Feature:
Art Historian and curator Lars Bang Larsen went to high school with Jacob Fabricius, the fellow Dane behind the non-profit free newspaper 'Old News', featured in 'The Last Newspaper'
Feature:
Editorial Curatorial. ‘The Last Post’, ‘The Last Gazette’, ‘The Last Register’, ‘The Last Star-Ledger’, ‘The Last Monitor’ and now ‘The Last Observer’ have set out in part to address the role of the curator versus the role of the editor. Our Cluj-Napoca correspondent Marcel Janco takes up the story.
The Next Newspaper:
Patch. Andrew Losowsky interviews Warren Webster, company president
Focus:
Irina Chernyakova on the 'Perpetual Peace Project’ of ‘The Last Newspaper’ partner organization the Slought Foundation.
Fit to Print:
Adam Chadwick attempts to get in touch with 'The Huffington Post' founder for his documentary film about the news industry.
100 years Ago…:
'The News-Herald' (Hillsboro, Highland Co., Ohio) 1886-1973 (changed title to 'The Hillsboro Press Gazette' (1973-1985), November 10, 1910. 

Cartoon: ‘The Woods: Backcover’ by Francesc Ruiz
‘Advertising Department’:
Ester Partegàs












IS THIS TRUE OR NOT?

‘The Last Observer’ London correspondent Lorena Muñoz-Alonso meets Wolfgang Tillmans, whose table top installation ‘Truth Study center’ is featured in ‘The Last Newspaper’.


Installation view of Wolfgang Tillmans’, Truth Study Center (NY), 2010.
Wood, glass, and mixed media. Courtesy the artist and Andrea Rosen Gallery,
© Wolfgang Tillmans. Photo: Benoit Pailley. Courtesy New Museum.

A door buzzer is activated on a busy street of East London on a rainy Saturday evening; I push and find myself in Between Bridges, the non-profit gallery space Wolfgang Tillmans opened in 2006 to show artists that “are overlooked in the London scene”. (The current exhibition is by Gerd Arntz, a fairly unknown German artist and activist of the Weimar era.) I climb the spiral staircase to the studio and Tillmans welcomes me upstairs and offers me tea. He is tired but talkative, having just returned from Nottingham, where he has been installing his works for the British Art Show 7. His studio is a huge open space, full of desks and wooden tables, where newspapers and magazines pile under the neon lights. “Last year at the Venice Biennale I had four table works. And I had a whole room table installation (Space, Food, Religion, 2010) at the Serpentine Gallery show. But having The Last Newspaper and the Nottingham show opening in the space of three weeks has reactivated the Truth Study center project in a very significant way”, he says while pointing to the build up of world-wide printed media that towers on every surface of the studio.

Lorena Muñoz-Alonso: What is or are the origins of your Truth Study Center works?

Wolfgang Tillmans: The project started in 2005 with a show in London at Maureen Paley which coincided with the publication of my third book for Taschen, also titled Truth Study center. It was a contradiction, somehow, because the contents of the book had nothing to do with the tables. That first show included sixteen tables. Then, in 2006, I had a big mid–career survey in the U.S., a show that toured between Chicago, Los Angeles and Mexico City which included a twenty-four-table installation. In 2007 I had a show at the Kestner-Gesellschaft in Hannover where I showed thirty tables, which then become part of the exhibition at the Hamburger Bahnhof in Berlin. So there have been two very big installations so far. The U.S. installation was altered from city to city; I was adding and adapting the contents depending on the context.

LM-A: So the way you can work on the tables is quite quick and reactive?

WT: Yes, pretty much. The tour was a year and a half long, and they were heady times in the American political arena, so it was interesting being able to incorporate all that to the work. There was a particular piece that was then published in The Guardian called ‘Ten easy steps for a fascist America’ by Naomi Wolf – a very heavy statement indeed. It was very striking and beautifully illustrated, so I made a table incorporating that on the spot. That table piece is again in The Last Newspaper exhibition. Americans don’t really like foreigners to criticise them. They are good at self-criticism, but the moment it’s a foreigner who does it, they can get defensive. But Wolf is American, so that couldn’t be accused of coming from European prejudices.


Detail of Truth Study Center (NY), 2010. Wood, glass, and mixed media.
Courtesy the artist and Andrea Rosen Gallery, © Wolfgang Tillmans. Photo: Latitudes


LM-A: How did you begin the process of incorporating the table as a new element in the vocabulary of your practice?

WT: It actually started in 1995 with a show at Portikus in Frankfurt where I used five flat cabinets to show images I had published in magazines. Also in the Turner Prize show in 2000 I used the same idea of laying out elements on a flat horizontal surface, so it was already settling within my practice then. While I was editing the Truth Study center book I came to this really obvious realisation that all my work happens on a table. A table provides a space for a loose arrangement, where things are laid out in a certain way, but can be easily rearranged. On a wall you have to pin or tape the stuff, but a table is more fluid. There is clarity and complete contingency at the same time.

LM-A: And why did you start using newspapers as raw material in your work?

WT: I had worked with found newspapers before, in the ‘Soldiers’ series (1999). I have to confess I am a bit of a newspaper junkie and have collected them since childhood. I often think that a day’s newspaper contains the essence of the whole world. But I guess that around 2002–2004, the years post 9/11, a clearer picture of the world we live in emerged – all the insanity that surrounded us – after what had seemed like the less politically charged 1990s. I was enraged and concerned and spending a lot of time reading media and thinking about all these different claims to the truth, ‘the big truth’ which was the ultimate justification behind all that violence and those wars. I realised that all the problems that the world faces right now arise from men claiming to possess absolute truths.


Detail of Truth Study Center (NY), 2010. Wood, glass, and mixed media.
Courtesy the artist and Andrea Rosen Gallery, © Wolfgang Tillmans. Photo: Latitudes

LM-A:
So hence the name…

WT: Of course it would be very desirable to have a completely neutral ‘Truth Study center’, but that will never be possible. So even though it has this big title, it is not claiming to be delivering truth, but rather looking at all these different, opposed truths. But it is not at all saying that everything is relative or subjective. I do think there are certain truths that are not negotiable, that some events and attitudes are wrong, and I am straightforward about in the work, which I think is precisely what makes it interesting. It takes a moral stand on the one hand, but on the other is always aware of its absurdity and of its extreme limitations. So it presents all these issues, like the impact of AIDS denial in Africa or the question of the existence or not of weapons of mass destruction in Iraq – the whole war came about from a single question: is this true or not?

LM-A: Are the tables fixed in their arrangements and subjects?

WT: The tables are, or can be, pieces in their own right. They do not always have to come in the same installations. But it’s the same as with a wall installation, when I think a grouping really works, I try to maintain it. But the working process is quite flexible and not set in stone.


LM-A: So you color–photocopy all the newspaper that are on the tables, which is already a process of translation in itself…

WT: Very much so. That is the essential part of the visual composition, because we have been talking a lot about content but of course if the table works were not interesting to look at, they wouldn’t have an artistic justification. I use the color photocopy because of aesthetic reasons, but also because the color copy is amazingly permanent, as opposed to newspaper. I couldn’t use the original newspaper cause it wouldn’t look good after a year. But media-wise there are also real things, like a lottery ticket, a bus ticket, a vegetable wrapper…



Installation view of the Truth Study Center (NY), 2010. Wood, glass, and mixed media.
Courtesy the artist and Andrea Rosen Gallery, © Wolfgang Tillmans. Photo: Latitudes

LM-A: You have a very strong relationship to printed matter. You have even said: “Everything I do happens on paper”, which I think is a simple but very meaningful realisation, with a lot of implications...

WT: I have a double interest in The Last Newspaper show. Not only do I use newspapers and magazines as material, but also my work is heavily featured in printed media and I use media as both generator and distributor of my work.

LM-A: What are the main subjects of your tables are in The Last Newspaper?

WT: There is one table about soldiers and war, one about religion, another about the depiction of war, games and violence on the internet. I also have some images of airlines and the experience of flying and there is one about Americans’ attitudes to food. There are a lot of critical messages there, but you could find all of them in very mainstream publications. Information and criticality is there for everyone, which is also one of issues I want to highlight in this work.

LM-A: Is this series your outlet for political expression?

WT: There is definitely a bit of that. I use these works to make statements on subjects that I feel very strongly about but that I can’t or don’t want to tackle in my photographs. At the same time, though, the reason why I started to work with images from the very beginning was because I wanted to be involved with what was going on the world. Questions of taste or of beauty have always been politically charged for me. Do you find two men kissing disgusting or beautiful? That is a question of aesthetics but also of politics. I’ve always had this very strong awareness that every freedom that I enjoy as a gay person has been hard fought for by many people before me, and that gave me a great sense of public responsibility. I think every person counts. I might be very traditional in that sense, but I really think it does matter.


e-flux's Time/Store opens at 41 Essex Street, New York

Stairs to ground floor where Time/Store is located on 41 Essex Street. Above e-flux store.


Time bank notes designed by Lawrence Weiner.
e-flux (artists Anton Vidokle and Julieta Aranda) began Time / Bank in 2009, with the "hope to create an immaterial currency and a parallel micro-economy for the cultural community, one that is not geographically bound, and that will create a sense of worth for many of the exchanges that already take place within our field." Previously presented during Frieze 2009, the project is now being presented in New York, with a store located on the ground level of 41 Essex Street.

Based on existing time banks such as Paul Glover's 1991 initiative in Ithaca, New York, e-flux's Time / Bank "will allow individuals to request, offer, and pay for services in Hour Notes" (designed by Lawrence Weiner and issued in half, one, six, twelve and twenty-four hour denominations). "When a task is performed, the credit hours earned may be saved and used at a later date, given to another person, or contributed towards developing larger communal projects."

Members can obtain Hour Notes by opening an account and earning hour credits by helping others. On the website listings are organised under categories such as Handy Works, Communication, Organization, Education, General Assistance, Transportation, Food, etc.

Quotes taken from http://www.e-flux.com/timebank/



This is the blog of the independent curatorial office Latitudes. You can also follow us on Facebook and Twitter.
All photos: Latitudes | www.lttds.org (except when noted otherwise in the photo caption)
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License.

Two Latitudes' publications at The New York Art Book Fair, 5–7 November, MoMA PS1

Two of Latitudes' publications are currently available at The New York Art Book Fair taking place this weekend (5–7 November) at MoMA PS1.

Simon Fujiwara's 'The Incest Museum: A Guide' is available from Archive Books/Archive Journal. The publication is related to his 'The Incest Museum' project and performance lecture. Fujiwara is presenting the performance in New York with Public Art Fund on 10 November, 6.30pm (John Tishman Auditoriu, 66 West 12th Street, between 5th and 6th Avenues).

'Portscapes' (see inside the publication box) is also available from SKOR's stand, placed in the 'Dutch Pavilion' section. 'Portscapes' was an evolving series of newly commissioned projects produced and presented throughout 2009 alongside the construction of Rotterdam's [51° 55' N 4° 29' E] Maasvlakte 2 – the extension to Europe's largest seaport and industrial area.

Participating artists & writers: Lara Almarcegui, Bik van der Pol, Jan Dibbets, Marjolijn Dijkman, Fucking Good Art, Ilana Halperin, Christina Hemauer & Roman Keller, Paulien Oltheten, Jorge Satorre, Hans Schabus (website: Maria Barnas (poetry) and Markus Miessen (interviews)).


The New York Art Book Fair
5–7 November 2010
MoMA PS1
http://nyartbookfair.com/

Newsletter #27 - November 2010


ONGOING...
Partner organisation in the exhibition 'The Last Newspaper', New Museum, New York, (6 October 2010–9 January 2011). Panel discussion: The New City Reader & Latitudes, chair: Richard Flood. Saturday 20 November, New Museum Theater.
Photo gallery here + documentation archive here

'Vic Cambrils Barcelona...A Library Project' for Midway Contemporary Art, Minneapolis, on view until 23 December 2010. Photo gallery here

FORTHCOMING IN 2011
Curators of the exhibition 'Christina Hemauer & Roman Keller: United Alternative Energies', Aarhus Art Building, Arhus, Denmark, 22 January–3 April 2011.


Curators of the Laboratorio 987 2011 season: 'Amikejo' MUSAC, León. First exhibition: 'Amikejo: Pennacchio Argentato' (29 January – 27 March 2011).

LATITUDES IN THE PRESS

'6 New Curators', Architectural Digest España (Spanish Edition), November 2010


Check Latitudes' web www.lttds.org for further info
Facebook page here
Twitter here
Flickr photosets here
Previous newsletter here
Youtube Latitudes Channel

'THE LAST MONITOR' AVAILABLE NOW! #5 issue of the 10 Latitudes-edited newspapers for 'The Last Newspaper' exhibition, New Museum


Issue 5: The Last Monitor
(READ IT ON ISSUU)
 
November 3, 2010


Cover: ‘Today & Yesterday’. Gustav Metzger, Eichmann and the Angel, 2005.
Exclusive interview: Janine Armin on 'The Last Newspaper's work 'Eating the Wall Street Journal' by William Pope L.
Cover Story: Sophie O’Brien on Gustav Metzger
‘Picture Agent: Our singular picture agency’: Jordan Wolfson, artist
The Next Newspaper: Irina Chernyakova on ‘The San Francisco Panorama’
Fit to Print: Adam Chadwick on the digital divide
100 Years Ago…: ‘The Bisbee Daily Review’, 1901–1971, November 3, 1910
Media Habits: Mark von Schlegell, science fiction novelist and art essayist
Focus: Marcel Janco on Sarah Charlesworth
‘Readers’ Lives’: 'Paper-Weight Champion', Inveterate collector Harley Spiller – who recently completed a masters thesis, ‘On Newsstands Now! A History of Paperweights and Newsstand Advertising’ – weighs up the ‘pisapapeles’, ‘Papierbeschwere’, and 鎮紙 of the world.
Feature: ‘Heralding the Gizmo’ Max Andrews on Kirstine Roepstorff
‘Readers’ Lives’ by Marc D’Andre
Infographic: Facebook poll: where does the New Museum's audience get their information?
Cartoon: ‘The Woods: Tools’ by Francesc Ruiz
‘Advertising Department’: Ester Partegàs with Holly Coulis and Ridley Howard

Watch this and other 'The Last...' issues on Latitudes' Youtube Channel


EXCLUSIVE CONTENT!

All images courtesy Harley Spiller. Photos: Micki Spiller

PAPER -WEIGHT CHAMPION
Inveterate collector Harley Spiller – who recently completed a masters thesis, ‘On Newsstands Now! A History of Paperweights and Newsstand Advertising’ – weighs up the ‘pisapapeles’, ‘Papierbeschwere’, and 鎮紙 of the world.


Newsstand paperweights – the usually cast-iron weights that saw their heyday in the 1950s on newsstands across the world – bear the insignia of newspapers and magazines like the New York Times, Toronto Star, Saturday Evening Post, Time, Life, and Newsweek. The Mortimer Spiller Company, Inc., my parents’ advertising and sales promotion business, manufactured and sold these weights from the late 1940s through the mid 1980s. A century of their concerted collecting and documentation efforts has resulted in an archive of 151 unique international newsstand weights, plus the original carved mahogany prototypes, news-dealer aprons and caps, business correspondence, photographs, almost 1,000 news clippings, and more.


Advertising and the media have always been linked. The nation’s first mass-market newspapers and magazines arrived in the 1890s and 1900s, their very existence made possible by advertising fees collected from large corporations and retailers. The first weights to hold down newspapers may have been well-worn horseshoes, which were readily available at the onset of the 20th century, about the time automobiles started replacing horses. Paperweights forged expressly for newsstand use started appearing shortly thereafter, and by mid-century they were a fixture on the urban scene.

In the 1950s and 1960s, some of the thousands of weights Spiller was making were shipped overseas by Life, Time, and the Herald Tribune. These weights were deployed on the handful of major newsstands that sold international publications in London, Paris, and other European capitals. Of the 45 total weights my father collected overseas, from the 1970s until 2005, there are 37 in languages other than English.

The weights Spiller collected on Barcelona’s Las Ramblas, where throngs of people go to shop, sit in public, people-watch, and while away the time, run the gamut from a rudimentary and well-used bent-steel ingot with its painted name La Visión, almost completely obliterated, to gorgeous heavily lacquered enamel and polished metal specimens from periodicals like ABC and El Mundo.

One of the heaviest weights in the collection is a 3 1/4 pound (1.5 kg) metal and plastic rectangle for the German weekly newsmagazine Der Spiegel, its colors reminiscent of Germany’s national flag. Less sophisticated weights made from blocks of wood in countries like Thailand and Venezuela reflect these nations’ less-industrialized position in the world, yet the New York Times has also used wooden weights, and other American publications, such as The National and BackStage have found it cost-effective to produce low-end particle board models.

In the late 20th century people in the United States bought, according to Thomas C. Leonard, “less than half as many newspapers per capita than the Japanese, the Finns, and the Swedes; the British and the Germans also were better customers”. According to the United Nations Development Programme’s 2009 Human Development Report, these six nationalities have the same 99% adult literacy rate, but New York City, perhaps because it is a great city for walking, seems to have the most newsstands and weights per capita in the world. Literacy is but one crucial factor in the sale of print media. Three other important factors in the prominence of newsstands and weights are a well-established culture of media advertising; locations within swarming transportation hubs where people have time to kill, or near heavily trafficked pedestrian areas (or in the case of Los Angeles, near slow-moving traffic jams); and a lively competition among an abundant array of publications. Despite the fact that Cubans are voracious consumers of news and boast an adult literacy tied for first in the world at 99.8 per cent, for example, politics on La Isla are such that news dealers are few and far between. One scantily stocked Havana news shanty opens on Sunday mornings only. Its lines are long, its newspapers are much in demand.

In Japan, newspapers and magazines are commonly sold at train stations and other relatively wind-free indoor or semi-sheltered locations. Publications are ordinarily kept in pristine condition until they are handed over to the customer. Outdoor newsstands are uncommon but some Japanese dealers put their publications in outdoor wire racks especially designed to obviate the need for weights.
The paperweight for The China Press (which goes by the name ‘Overseas Chinese Newspaper’ in Chinese) claims its “rich content” can “heal the homesickness of overseas Chinese” by allowing readers to “contact the feeling” of the mainland. No matter where they are published or distributed, newspapers and magazines provide a link to their land of origin.
Back in Manhattan, for many years, the place to find print journalism from near and far was Hotalings, also known as the Out of Town Newspaper Agency. Hotalings was often the only link between people in New York and their lands of birth. For many others it was the best place to look for jobs and news from outside Gotham. Its huge selection meant customers could find everything from Pravda to Paris Match to Polish Engineering. Founded in 1905, Hotalings newsstands were located over the years in various parts of Times Square, from teeming street corners to the former New York Times Building to a tourist information kiosk on Broadway and 46th Street. New York City’s ever-shifting demographics have long been paralleled by Hotalings’ clientele. “We don't get the crowds from the theater district anymore. People don't roam in Times Square like they used to. It used to be mostly Western Europeans or people interested in Europe,” said Arthur Hotaling, the founder’s grandson, in 1988. “Now we get a lot more people from Latin America and the third world.” Despite efforts in the 1990s to spruce up the store and expand its offerings, the 105-year-old business is today a wholesale-only operation.

The pageantry of print media is in flux. Single-copy sales are down and impulse purchases are more sporadic. Will newspapers and magazines go the way of buggy whips and coin-operated telephones? No one knows, but one thing’s certain – the cast-iron cameos known as newsstand paperweights will last a long time.

Submit your story by emailing ‘The Last Monitor’: [email protected]

'THE LAST STAR-LEDGER' AVAILABLE NOW! #4 issue of the 10 Latitudes-edited newspapers for 'The Last Newspaper' exhibition, New Museum

'The Last Star-Leger' – Issue #4
(READ IT ON ISSUU)

Table of contents:

Picture Agent - Our singular picture agency:
Haegue Yang (cover)
Media Habits:
Nicoline van Harskamp
Focus:
Collin Munn on 'The Last Newspaper's work 'Untitled' (2006) by Dash Snow
Feature: Latitudes on the
'The Last Newspaper's partner organisation StoryCorps & archive interview between journalist Ed Pierce and his grandson Scott Cole
Interview:
'Rank & File' Ignasi Aballí on his 'Lists' series

The Next Newspaper: Latitudes interview with Nick Mrozowski Creative Director of Portugal's newest newspaper 'i'
1989 Patricia Esquivias on…:
Communism
'Dirt Sheet':
Janine Armin's column
100 Years Ago...:
'The Tacoma Times' (Tacoma, Washington) 1903–1949, October 27, 1910.
Weekly cartoon strip: Francesc Ruiz
Advertising department:
Ester Partegàs with Rob McKenzie



EXCLUSIVE CONTENT!

Nick Mrozowski during his visit to 'The Last Newspaper' exhibition holding a copy of that days' New York Times. Photo: Latitudes.


THE NEXT NEWSPAPER: i


Fresh from putting together a 40-page on-site weekend newspaper for the Society of News Designers conference in Denver – Michigan native Nick Mrozowski, the Creative Director of Portugal's newest newspaper, simply called 'i', stopped by 'The Last Star-Ledger' newsroom.

 
The Last Star-Ledger:
Tell us about the origins of i [pronounced ‘ee’] – was there a lot of research done into what people wanted from a newspaper in 2009? Was it independently started?


Nick Mrozowski:
The guys who launched the paper are seasoned pros in the Portuguese market. They've been directors of other newspapers so they're well-versed in the economy and business. i was started by a public-works construction company in Portugal. They happen to have a publishing branch – they publish regional newspapers – and wanted a national newspaper. Innovation Media Consulting, started in Spain, consulted on the editorial ideas and design before it launched. Even more than their knowledge or research of the market, they tried to create a newspaper based on their instincts and ideas that was totally different to anything else. The staff we hired is very young and capable of serious journalism, but with a lot of spirit, energy, and humor. That naturally found its way into the newspaper and because of that our audience is even younger than we initially thought.
The newspaper has about 55 or 60 people in the newsroom now. I'm the sole art director, though I didn't design the initial project. The graphic model was done by Javier Errea, who is the most famous Spanish newspaper designer now. He just won the Society for News Design's Lifetime Achievement Award at forty-three years old! In the last fifteen years that his studio has been going, they've probably been involved with most of the newspapers in Spain and Portugal.

Cover i, 7 October 2010

TLS-L: The design is obviously a critical part of the newspaper. To what degree did the staff have either design or press backgrounds which came together in its visual journalism?

NM: We have reporters and designers of different functions. My degree is in journalism, but I focused on design. In all the newspapers I have worked on, I've been asked as much to be an editor as a designer. Our newsroom at i is a total open-plan. We work in the same room without cubicles or dividers with zones designed for communication. In the center are the top editors and then spiraling out are the various news desks, designers, and photographers.


TLS-L: Is there a typical way an article is put together?


NM: An editor or reporter decides there is going to be a story about something. They would then come and speak to one of the designers about what they're going to have for the page. We have our own jargon for types of stories or design elements to make it faster. That's pretty standard. The thing we do that's a little bit different is how we start a page. Throughout the course of a day we change it a million times, not only because an article comes in longer or shorter, we change it because somebody has a new idea. There are five designers, one design editor, and myself for the design portion.

Cover i, 26 July 2010

TLS-L: And you have 4 sections which are not at all based on traditional newspapers...

NM: i is 25 x 35 cm (9 8/10” x 13 8/10”) x with 48, 56 or 64 pages. It starts with ‘Opinion’ on the first four pages to get you thinking. The following short section ‘Radar’ is all the news you need to know from the last 24 hours in different formats: a few briefs, a portion of quotations, a photo that tells a story by itself, an info-graphic that has no text accompanying it. The big ‘Zoom’ section is more in depth, more analytical, with longer format, bigger stories, mostly two-page spreads. At the end we have a section called ‘Mais’ (meaning 'more') which has culture, sports, and lifestyle. We don't have this feeling that we need a 'national' or 'international' section with a set number of pages or stories with a certain length, the editing is much more fluid. Although we have developed some habits over time, nothing is set in stone. It changes from one hour to the next, making it harder to work but producing a better result. For some newspapers, it’s a way forward: to be more aggressive, not just in reporting, but in the way we think about how we report.

TLS-L: You must hear people talking about the decline of the traditional newspaper all the time?

NM: I see what's happening but I don't believe it. I think there are a lot more to come. They're going to change, they have to change, but it's good change. Obviously the internet is not going anywhere. We talk about it a lot in the industry. Everybody has different points of view and every couple of months there is a prevailing strategy, idea, or criticism. News used to be a printed newspaper – it's not anymore – but a newspaper isn't necessarily an online thing. I read the online version of the New York Times all the time in Lisbon because you can't buy it (you can only get the International Herald Tribune), so I read it in the morning before I go into work, I read it during the day.

Cover i, 19 June 2010

TLS-L: Yet in a traditional newspaper you find things you wouldn't otherwise read.

NM: When I go online I read a lot of stories because there's little investment in clicking a link, if a headline caught my eye, or an illustration. Funnily enough, now that I’ve been reading the New York Times on printed format here these last days, I find it really strange to navigate as an object.


TLS-L: Can you give our news team any advice?


NM: A good newspaper should have texture and a feeling of some immediacy. Try to highlight the liveness of it. Save yourself one part each time and only do it in the last thirty minutes so you have no idea what it's going to be. Desperation is a reality of newspapers!

 
– Interview by Latitudes. Edited by Greg Barton.

 
+ images of i covers here.

Book launch of Mireia Sallarès' 'Las Muertes Chiquitas'

Mireia Sallarès presented her book 'Las Muertes Chiquitas' tonight in New York at the Bluestockings bookstore. The publication also forms a part of Latitudes' project at Midway Contemporary Art, Minneapolis.

The film will be screened at King Juan Carlos Center, New York University on Saturday, October 30 from 2-7 pm, followed by a round table discussion on Wednesday November 3, at 6.30 pm.

Introducing 'The Last...' team

We would like to introduce the team behind 'The Last...' newspaper project, part of 'The Last Newspaper' exhibition at the New Museum on view until 9 January 2011. During 10 weeks, editors-in-chief Latitudes are producing and publishing ten 12-page weekly hyper-local newspapers 'The Last...' (Post, Gazette, Register, Star-Ledger...) from the third gallery floor at the New Museum. Latitudes is closely collaborating with the following individuals...

'The Last...' News Team:

Janine Armin's art writing and book reviews appear in The International Herald Tribune, Bookforum, Artforum.com, Saatchi Online, Artslant, The Architect's Journal, and The Globe and Mail among others. She is New York editor for fiction/non-fiction hub Joyland.ca, and an M.A. 2012 candidate at the Bard Center for Curatorial Studies.


Greg Barton is currently helping with the New Museum's Public Programs archive in addition to assisting Triple Candie in Harlem. Previously he worked for Independent Curators International as well as the National Gallery of Art in D.C.

Irina Chernyakova is currently part of the news team for 'The Last...' project. In May she earned her Bachelor of Architecture from Cornell University. Most recently, she worked as a teaching associate for an introductory architecture program.


Collin Munn is currently a student at the Gallatin School of Individualized Study, concentrating in 'Critical Curating'. His interests lie primarily within curating and critiquing contemporary art, specifically work that addresses broader social and cultural issues. In addition to working with Latitudes during the fall, Collin is also a founding member of the Makeshift Collective, and is working on several curatorial ventures of his own.


Gwen Schwartz is an artist and writer who is based in New York City. She grew up on an island in Maine where her talents flourished, however it wasn't until she came to New York City four years ago to get her BFA in Fine Arts that she began to fully realize them. Now, nearing her graduation, Gwen has a new goal in life: to be a rock star.

'The Last...' Graphic Design team:


Chad Kloepfer is a New York-based graphic designer. He was Senior Graphic Designer at the Walker Art Center, Minneapolis, for seven years where he worked on projects including exhibition publications ('The Quick and the Dead' (2009); 'House of Oracles, A Huang Yong Ping Retrospective' (2005); 'How Latitudes Become Forms: Art in a Global Age' (2003)) as well as various print materials, and the Walker Expanded identity. He is currently Art Director of Artforum magazine. superserious.net


Joel Stillman is a Graphic Designer and an independent publisher living in Greenpoint, Brooklyn. He is currently 27 years old. His practice examines linguistic definition. http://www.normalnumber.com/
 
'The Last...' 'Advertising Department':
Ester Partegàs is a Spanish-born visual artist living and working in Brooklyn, New York. Partegàs is the 'Advertising Department' of 'The Last…' newspaper project, for which she collaborates with other artists in the production of weekly (anti)adverts. Partegàs currently has a solo show at Foxy Production, New York (on view until 27 November 2010) and in 2011 will participate in a group show at the Whitechapel, London. www.esterpartegas.com
 'The Last...' weekly cartoon:
Francesc Ruiz is a visual artist based in Barcelona, Spain. Ruiz is 'The Last…' newspaper project weekly cartoonist. He recently participated in the Philagrafika show at Temple Gallery, Philadelphia (2010) and is currently exhibiting 'The Paper Trail' at the Contemporary Image Collective, Cairo (on view until 20 November 2010). Ruiz is currently preparing 'Gasworks Yaoi', his first solo show in London.

+ info:
Photo tour of 'The Last Newspaper' exhibition here
Read reviews and press release here

'THE LAST REGISTER' AVAILABLE NOW! #3 issue of the 10 Latitudes-edited newspapers for 'The Last Newspaper' exhibition, New Museum

Issue 3: The Last Register
(READ IT ON ISSUU)

October 20, 2010


Cover: ‘Exhibit: Exposed!’. Installing 'The Last Newspaper' wall text
Report: ‘Reaction Distraction’: Gwen Schwartz on the TLN talk with participating artists Nate Lowman, Aleksandra Mir and Sarah Charlesworth
Focus: Doryun Chong on TLN artist Adrian Piper’s Vanilla Nightmares (1986)
Media Habits: Dora García
Dirt Sheet: Janine Armin on truth and fiction
Picture Agent: Sergio Vega
The Next Newspaper: Paul Schmelzer on the American Independent News Network
Feature: ‘Broadcasting’, Joe Salzman on the representation of the journalists on TV
Exclusive interview: Latitudes with TLN cartoonist Francesc Ruiz
‘Patricia Esquivias on...The French Revolution’
100 Years Ago…: New York Tribune
Feature: ‘Hyphen-ated’ by Stephen Spretnjak
Photo essay: ‘Behind the Scenes’, Installing ‘The Last Newspaper’
Cartoon: ‘The Woods: Scratch Lottery’ by Francesc Ruiz
Advertising: Ester Partegàs with Adam Shecter



This Week's Headlines
 

Philadelphia Newsstand (2010), installation at Temple Gallery, Philadelphia.
Courtesy the artist and Galeria Estrany-de la Mota, Barcelona.

“Before the internet, newsstands were the closest thing we had to web browsing”

Barcelona-based artist Francesc Ruiz is creating ‘The Woods’, a specially-commissioned cartoon strip for the back cover of each of ‘The Last...’ newspapers. The Editors-in-Chief of ‘The Last Register’ caught up with him as he prepared for an exhibition in Cairo.


Latitudes
: Is 'The Woods' a family, or is it a place?

Francesc Ruiz:
They're kind of a family or a community, as well as a place. The name was inspired by the last part of François Truffaut’s 1966 film based on Ray Bradbury’s 1953 novel Fahrenheit 451. It’s set in a totalitarian society in which books have been made illegal and are being burned. A group of people go into hiding in the woods and decide to memorize great works of literature. They create a community that transmits books orally from generation to generation. Each of them incorporates a different book: there are five ‘Moby Dick’s, four ‘Don Quixote’s, and so on. It talks about the power of human knowledge to adapt to difficult and new situations, which is something that – although under a completely different perspective – is happening right now with the threat to printed matter and the adaptation of content to new formats. In ‘The Woods’ I'm using the city newsstand, magazines and newspapers, as a way of talking about different lifestyles, about specialization and ideology. I want to create a kind of masquerade ball in which everybody is represented or at least plays a role in the social architecture, something also very related to web 2.0 and platforms such as Facebook.

L: Where if anywhere do you draw the lines between art and design, or artists and designers?

FR: It’s all about self-consciousness and a critical perspective. As long as cultural object producers (which is what I consider both artists and designers to be) look at their work as something critically produced, to me it makes no sense to establish differences. Looking at it from a slightly different angle, someone asked me recently if I’d ever produced a ‘mainstream’ comic. I think comic books and design can be understood in different ways, just as both experimental cinema and popular cinema coexist. I try to work on the experimental side, but whether this work is read as art or not depends entirely on the context in which it’s received.

 
L: Can our readers follow the cartoon strip as an ongoing narrative?  

FR: No it doesn't follow a linear narrative – each issue shows a situation. The whole cartoon strip creates a series of scenes which build on my recent experiences working with a newsstand scenario before in Philadelphia, and now in Cairo. I did consider creating something more narrative led using characters that keep reappearing, but decided against it.
 
Cairo Newsstand (2010), installation at the Contemporary Image Collective, Cairo.
Courtesy the artist and Galeria Estrany-de la Mota, Barcelona.

L: Specialist magazines target a public that has already been identified, yet they can also create new and perhaps unexpected followings. How does the newsstand feature in this relationship?

FR: Before the internet, newsstands were the closest thing we had to a web browsing experience. You could go there, buy specialist papers and magazines, check out the contacts sections, the classified ads, and see all the niches you could initiate yourself into. Through the printed press you were able to discover new things, it was the main knowledge distribution channel. With most of this now moving online the fetishistic element is not the same. Although there are some web-based attempts to create a similar interface to the newsstand, its visual power of the newsstand is unique.
For me a newsstand is a form of information architecture, a superstructure or a special building with inhabitants that change periodically. It’s an amazing tool with which to analyse the world and contemporary society. The matter of what will happen to newsstands as printed material begins disappears is something that is already visible: they're converting into lottery card retail points, as well as beverage and snack stands. But maybe they will have a different use in the future? I'm thinking of creating ‘The Newsstand Museum’, a museum with different newsstands from different countries and periods. Every stand will show the content exactly as it was in a specific time and place. For example September 10, 2001.

L: Can you tell us more about the Philadelphia project you mentioned, made for the Philagrafika 2010?

FR: I presented a newsstand for which I created all the printed content: a magazine formed by 120 covers and a newspaper which reproduced 12 different front pages. With these two publications I was able to build the ‘skin’ of the newsstand. I added speech bubbles to the covers, and recreated some important characters of the city mixed in with references to different neighborhoods, institutions, shops and bars. My idea was to create an analogy of the city and my experiences, initial reactions and perhaps prejudices about Philly after having been there for just a short residency period. I added a narrative layer around three main subjects: the city as the place where graffiti culture started, the city through which the AIDS crisis was imagined in the 1993 film Philadelphia, and finally the city’s Mural Arts Program, a (successful to some) anti-graffiti initiative. Through the different layers of newsstand I attempted to approximate the complexities of the city, as well as race, gender and class issues. I'm now creating a new newsstand for the Contemporary Image Collective in Cairo and it will take the form of a typical Egyptian street newsstand, only it will be made with newspapers covers that I've modified with a dialogue between the stones that are used as paperweights.

Cairo Newsstand (2010), installation at the Contemporary Image Collective, Cairo.
Courtesy the artist and Galeria Estrany-de la Mota, Barcelona.

L: What difficulties and luxuries has this very particular format of the serial cartoon strip present to you as an artist?

FR: I made a comic strip series with artist Pauline Fondevila in which we explored the bars of a city nearby Barcelona. Basically it was an autobiographical comic strip in wich we drew ourselves getting drunk and having adventures. We published forty different comic strips and they were published daily, the problem was that after a while the energy and the inspiration weren't there any more – and we had very bad hangovers! On the one hand it was very nice and a special format to play with in order to recreate worlds, but on the other you end up feeling a little like a slave to the daily production process.
This ten week trial for ‘The Last Newspaper’ is a great period to develop another small universe – that's essentially what I'm trying to do. The weekly frequency is fine compared to a daily routine. I recently showed a daily comic strip for Creative Time Comics, but all of these projects need a lot of commitment.  

L: Is there a particular newspaper cartoon you admire or took inspiration from?

FR: I don’t think Tales of the Beanworld by Larry Marder was ever published in a newspaper. I'm a big fan of George Herriman’s Krazy & Ignatz originally published daily in the New York Evening Journal, and that has always has been a source of inspiration to me. The genre ambiguity, the bricks, the accent of the characters and those amazing landscapes, I love it all! Of course there are now a lot of people working on digital comic books and digital comic strips. It's interesting to see how scrolling works very well when reading linear narratives, actually better than the page-by-page structure. Scott McCloud is for me first author who successfully started to explore the potential of the comic book medium. But my favourite author is Kang Full, the Korean Manhwa webcomic artist. The funny thing is that he later prints his comics in paper format which entails a very interesting re-adaptation. And this seems a very apposite process for this period in between two regimes, the page-based former one and the web-based new one.

– Interview by Latitudes, October 2010


Founded in 2005 by Max Andrews and Mariana Cánepa Luna, Latitudes is a curatorial office based in Barcelona, Spain, that works internationally across contemporary art practices.

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