Original art, literature and more at UO Zine Fest April 26

On April 26, the second annual UO Zine Fest will be returning to campus to celebrate the advantages of self-publishing, while giving students an opportunity to showcase or view original art from the around the community. There will also be free workshops for students interested in learning how to make a zine.

UO students Mary Vertulfo and Teddy Tsai, founders of UO Zine Fest, got the idea for a campus-based zine festival after attending Euzine Fest in 2016, which is hosted in downtown Eugene once a year and attracts artists from all around the US.

“We felt bringing something like that to campus would be a great opportunity for students to get creative and show their work,” said Vertulfo.

Vertulfo, who’s currently working towards a Bachelor’s of Fine Art degree, will be showcasing several of her own zines at the festival. She loves the freedom and accessibility surrounding zine culture.

A typical zine can range from a single sheet of paper to a small book. Sometimes they follow a certain theme or story, and other times they include a collection of work from multiple artists.

“You can make them on a photocopier and a single sided sheet of paper can be made into a zine that gets passed around and shared. Because they’re so easy to make and distribute, they can be about anything and for any type of community,” Vertulfo said.

Tsai, who is a fourth year art major, agreed that zines are an accessible medium for many kinds of artists.

“Some are poetry, some are comics and drawings, they can really be anything,” Tsai, fourth year art major, said. “It really doesn’t matter how good you are at drawing or writing. It’s an open-format. If you doodle all the time, you can collect your doodles into a booklet and you have a zine.”

In the 1970’s, zines found a home in the punk scenes of larger cities, after technological advances helped make the large-scale production of zines cheap and accessible to just about anyone. The DIY culture of zines mixed well with the anti-establishment values of punk culture, creating a perfect storm for the underground press that covered what were, at the time, unknown bands, like The Ramones, The Clash and Joy Division.

Taylor Jones is a UO graduate and musician who is excited for the opportunity to get some feedback on a zine he’s been working on throughout the past few months.

“I aim to explore the human condition through the lens of art and culture,” Jones said. “It will be a print-only source for music recommendations, short stories, open letters and visual art. Our first issue ‘Art is Illegal’ hits the press, the streets and your friend’s bedroom this spring.”

One of Vertulfo’s favorite aspects of the Zine Fest is the sense of community and the ability to make and share art with few resources.

“The fest is a way to get a bunch of super passionate people and creators in a room to say, ‘Hey, I love something so much that I’m going to make something about it, and I want you to share that with me, so here’s a zine,’ ” Vertulfo said. “ It’s a great way to build community, spread information, and celebrate the diversity of the arts and creative spaces on campus and in the community.”

The 2018 UO Zine Fest will be held in the EMU Crater Lake rooms on Thursday, April 26, from 12 p.m. to 6 p.m. Registration is open for tabling and sharing your own zine, and can be found here.

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Donny Morrison

Donny Morrison

Donny Morrison is a News Reporter at the Emerald. He previously worked as a News Reporter at The Torch.

Email Donny: [email protected]
Twitter: @DonnyMorrison26