Fresh from the Field — As needed, as possible.

4 months ago by

The latest edition from Gloria Books As needed, as possible was first brought to life as a series of e-pubs (.pdf), that collected discourse around the role Enjoy—and contemporary art spaces—play within a broader arts ecology and society in Aotearoa. This print publication (designed by Kate Kerr) looks outward, building upon conversations with friends and colleagues around how to make a life, and a living, in and around art. As with all of Katies mahi the design is impeccably considered.

The Brief / project Kaupapa:

As needed, as possible is a digital and print publication that emerges from thinking, talking and making around art, labour and life in contemporary Aotearoa. Published by GLORIA and Enjoy Contemporary Art Space, the project considers the social, economic and political frameworks practitioners and organisations occupy, thinking through the kind of spaces and culture we wish to be working in and how we might arrive there.

Edited by Sophie Davis and Simon Gennard, and designed by Katie Kerr, the publication includes contributions by Emma Bugden and Chloe Geoghegan, Sophie Davis, Simon Gennard, Sarah Hudson and Zoe Thompson-Moore, Ella Grace McPherson-Newton, Ōtautahi Kōrerotia, Public Share, James Tapsell-Kururangi and Ema Tavola.

Some of the contributions to this volume were written prior to the events surrounding Covid-19, and many do not directly reference the situation we now find ourselves in. If anything, they now remind us that the exigencies faced by contemporary practitioners—questions of how to fit art around raising a family, how to play with risks and possibilities, how to grapple with history and the present—have not disappeared in the face of global crisis, and continued dialogue is more important than ever.

The Design Response:

As needed, as possible was originally released as downloadable PDFs during lockdown, eventually taking shape into a print publication.

When designing a book, PDFs will be exchanged between editor, designer, proofreader, printer as the publication evolves from concept to print. This collection of files can be an interesting insight into the designer’s process, an archive of thinking that is rarely seen. In this project, we saw the PDF as a space for experimentation. Releasing the contributions periodically as PDFs generated the opportunity for catalogued design research. As Katie worked towards designing the book, each file acted as a possible point of departure for the impending publication.

A PDF can be a “working file,” but it’s also something to be saved. As we discussed this project, we noted our own folders of PDFs filed away for future reference, able to be accessed offline or ripe for printing—anytime, anywhere, on the home printer, in multiples, shared amongst colleagues, students, friends, and then thrown away until it is remade to be referenced again. As an antithesis to the Covid-induced overload of online content, we suggested that this is how the reader could use these PDFs, enjoying them offline over a cup of tea.

Eventually, we came through lockdown and the possibility of producing a print publication became viable once again. Transforming the “working files”, each its own design possibility, into a single format meant filtering through multiple lines of enquiry to create a publication that spoke to the overarching kaupapa of the project — collectivity, labour and care.

The Collaborators:

Editors: Sophie Davis and Simon Gennard
Designer: Katie Kerr
Contributors: Emma Bugden and Chloe Geoghegan, Sophie Davis, Simon Gennard, Sarah Hudson and Zoe Thompson-Moore, Ella Grace McPherson-Newton, Ōtautahi Kōrerotia, Public Share, James Tapsell-Kururangi and Ema Tavola.
Publishers: GLORIA and Enjoy Contemporary Art Space


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