One of things I value in magazines is clarity; when analysing a new publication we often criticize the opaque or unclear. Magazines are a form of communication, after all. But they can also be entertainment, and sometimes pure experience. This new title from Swiss–US curatorial group Kulturfolger is defiantly the latter.
The launch issue of Kulturfolger magazine has taken three years from conception to completion, with content collated from an open submission process. The various contributions are intriguing and curious, reflecting the editors’ desire to highlight the relationships and networks between plants, animals and humans. It’s a platform magazine, a collection of art from diferent contributors, but what makes it special is the way the physical format of the magazine emphasises the random combinations of imagery.
It opens to reveal two bound sections, each of which has multiple foldouts. Images and stories jump between the two sections, and brief texts expand their scope. Genetics, topiary, dance, infographics… I’ve been exploring the issue for several days and am still enjoying the experience. This is magazine-making as poetry, impressionistic rather than definitive, curious rather than sensible, and a fascinating and unique experiment that is a refreshing reminder of what can happen when you break the rules and challenge the very idea of ‘magazine.’