Tuesday, 16 November 2010
I was privileged enough recently to be in the audience for Teal Triggs' Fanzines: A DIY Revolution lecture. I have only recently heard of Teal but she proved to be a very interesting speaker. As somewhat of an authority on the art of fanzines she gave us an insightful talk on what it is to be a fanzine creator, the origins of the 'zine' and some of the best examples from over the years.
"What is a fanzine?' was the first question she posed upon us. And with a mixed response she answered it herself (with a little help);
"...little publications filled with rantings of high weirdness and exploding with chaotic design." [Stephen Duncombe 1997]
And this was precisely what she preceded to show us. We took a leap through history from the early 1960s and early zine culture, through the Punk era and the boom of zine 'manufacture' that coincided with the angered politics of the time, right up to rave culture publications in the 90's. What was particularly insightful to hear was the association with Manchester/Northwest and the zine scene. I am aware of the culture I am living in and the history that surrounds me and so was aware of the certain element of zine culture that exited/exists here in Manchester. What was nice about it though was the fondness with which Teal spoke about some of her favorite zines, all from in and around the Northwest.
As she left us she posed another question. An obviously poignant one to her. In the current times of rapid knowledge and the dominance of the internet "Are zines still relative? Is there still a revolution going on?"