Do you remember your first zine? My first encounter with the art form was basically in the form of word vomit by a collage artist from L.A., which I found in Issu. I found his work enticing, albeit overly vibrant in the choice of colors, but it gave me a rough idea of what zines are: literature paired with striking visuals that serve as vehicles for the creator’s expression of just about anything.
Zines took their name from the “fanzine”, short for fan magazine, which were self-published works created by sci-fi enthusiasts in the 1930s. Decades later, it became a way for subversive subcultures to create networks of their own: feminism, politics, punk music. The zine paved the way for revolt and activism.
The zine we know now is different from how the zine started: from simple photocopied pages, we now have intricate works of art, fancy paper folded artistically, aesthetics that blur the line between art and literature. But still, the backbone remains the same: freedom of expressing radical ideas, free from the reigns of mainstream publishing.
This is what the Komura; Black & White Zine Fair is all about: spreading independent and quality content to networks of people. It’s stripping down the zine we know today to its most basic form: photocopied pages that are folded and stapled together. It’s a celebration of free speech — a compilation of ideas and stories from creators all over the country.