Crafting a publication: The Magazine Club

Crafting a publication: The Magazine Club

The Magazine Club is a group of artists, run by artists.

Fri 28 Jun 2024 10:36 AM

On Mondays, the group behind The Magazine Club meet up in Lisa Hompes’s kitchen to produce a magazine consisting of instantaneous painted creativity and words inspired by themes suggested by the hostess.

Lisa Hompes and Marie Murakami of The Magazine Club. Ph. @marcobadiani

The magazine is handmade by a mixed editorial team of 10 artistic and talented minds from all over the world who have one thing in common: they are all living in or are experiencing Florence in that moment. Out of the flames and into the fire, the magazine occasionally leaves the crucible of the kitchen for the purposes of research and contemporary patronage, meaning that some issues have been crafted on the road while staying at a winery in the Tuscan countryside (Petrolo, to be precise), with a doctor leading an interesting life and sailing on a boat in the Mediterranean. The editorial team is not closed off to a select few. On the contrary, guest artists continue to take part, adding different points of view to the pages. Nearly 125 artists have created almost 3,000 works across the 60-plus editions published to date.

One very lucky Monday, the eclectic Ursula Beatt introduced me to TMC’s Lisa Hompes (founder, editor-in-chief and artist) and Marie Murakami (COO and artist). It was the first time the magazine had opened their activities to the public with the exhibition titled At The Kitchen Table at Spazio Sassetti, and the team seized the opportunity to demonstrate their generative process. The space filled with light and creative energy proved deeply moving as paint, clay and flowers permeated the air. One table was draped in tulle, not unlike Lisa’s kitchen. The editorial style of the drawings had been hung up on two wires, like creative clothing. People were sitting on the windowsills or on the ground, intent on reading issues of the magazine. An entire wall was covered with the back-catalogue of The Magazine Club, proof of the solid bases of the publishing project and its constant artistic production.

I asked Marie about the Monday tradition. “We wanted to see what would happen if we stayed true to a few basic rules and repetition, like in certain natural processes that achieve optimal organization organically without the need for planning.”

Lisa, on the other hand, answered my question about the nature of the collective.

The Magazine Club is a group of artists, run by artists. While, at first glance, it seems counterintuitive, this actually allows us to make an artwork out of the structure of the company. The creativity that powers the artworks is therefore also employed in innovating the business structure itself.”

“So, The Magazine Club is a business?” I wondered out loud.

“Yes, we call it Live Artistic Journalism. In addition to our weekly production, TMC can be hired as a creative group to organize presentations, fashion shows, events and dinners. We take materials from a chef or fabrics and turn them into watercolours, immediately communicating the vibe, capturing what’s happening around us as a well-structured flow.”

Lisa and Marie tell me about when they sailed around the Balearic Islands, collecting limestone and powders in the coves, grottoes and centuries-old ground before turning them into “geological” colours for Issue 60. This unique research into materials loaned distinctive earthy connotations to the publication as well as shaping a supply chain method for the pigments that will define future issues of The Magazine Club.

The magazine is made in one day, Mondays, based on an invitation by Lisa. Upon completion, it is assembled, scanned and copied, without editing, on textured paper to make 100 collector’s copies.

The Magazine Club is on sale at Bjork Florence and PopCafe.

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