ARC magazine lives!
The Royal College of Art's ARC magazine has come back from the brink with a suitably morbid new issue funded by a Kickstarter campaign. Still shaken from its own near-death experience, this makes for a very rewarding read...
The back cover follows on from the front coverline, "This magazine is dead. All of..."
That this is issue 16 of its current incarnation belies the fact that the magazine has had a long and celebrated previous life as 'Ark' from 1950-1978, where many now established design names – including David Gentleman, Alan Fletcher and Len Deighton – could be seen working on it.
Despite the subtle name change when it was reborn in 2004, ARC's premise has remained the same: it is an entirely student-run journal that offers a platform for student artwork and writing. According to its first issue's editorial, its purpose was to explore "the elusive but necessary relationships between the arts and the social context" (Alex Seago's history of the magazine is on the Eye website, here).
In the case of the current 'death' issue, the writing is now centre stage and the influence of the college's MA Critical Writing in Art and Design course, now in its fourth year, permeates the pages. The theme was chosen as a nod to the fact that this very issue might well have been ARC's last, or may not have happened at all. But thanks to a well-run campaign via the Kickstarter fundraising site (the money raised covered the journal's print and delivery costs) the title lives on and the writing thrives.
Edited by Charmian Griffin, with assistant editors Natalie Ferris, Elizabeth Glickfeld, Sarah Jury and Jamie Sutcliffe, ARC 16 covers a range of deathly subjects.
Mixing with 16th century visions of hell is the story of the shooting of Chunee, the elephant who got loose in the Strand in London in 1826; an interview with Julijonas Urbonas, designer of the hypothetical Euthansia Coaster ride (which you can really only enjoy once); and a startling piece on the dehumanising effects of retributive justice by Clive Stafford Smith of human rights charity, Reprieve. There is dark humour and more serious pieces here in equal measure.
Designed by Matthew Stuart and Pedro Pina, ARC 16 is appropriately black and white throughout. But despite its funereal appearance, there is some thrilling writing within and ARC is alive and kicking.
CR for the iPad
Read in-depth features and analysis plus exclusive iPad-only content in the Creative Review iPad App. Longer, more in-depth features than we run on the blog, portfolios of great, full-screen images and hi-res video. If the blog is about news, comment and debate, the iPad is about inspiration, viewing and reading. As well as providing exclusive, iPad-only content, the app will also update with new content throughout each month. Try a free sample issue here
CR in Print
The May issue of Creative Review is the biggest in our 32-year history, with over 200 pages of great content. This speial double issue contains all the selected work for this year's Annual, our juried showcase of the finest work of the past 12 months. In addition, the May issue contains features on the enduring appeal of John Berger's Ways of Seeing, a fantastic interview with the irrepressible George Lois, Rick Poynor on the V&A's British Design show, a preview of the controversial new Stedelijk Museum identity and a report from Flatstock, the US gig poster festival. Plus, in Monograph this month, TwoPoints.net show our subcribers around the pick of Barcelona's creative scene.
If you would like to buy this issue and are based in the UK, you can search for your nearest stockist here. Based outside the UK? Simply call +44(0)207 292 3703 to find your nearest stockist. Better yet, subscribe to CR for a year here and save yourself almost 30% on the printed magazine.
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