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Magazines are supposed to be products of great labor and consideration. But while its name may suggest something slapdash, One-Hour Magazine isn’t sloppy at all. “In the same way that a haiku will encourage you to fit the rules, hopefully [you’ll] wind up trying new things as a result of the time constraint that we’re imposing,” says Justin Jacoby Smith, one of the local musicians behind the magazine.
Tonight, Smith’s arts collective The Parley is assembling its fourth issue of One-Hour Magazine at Eckington’s Hole in the Sky. Thirty strangers will have 60 minutes conceive and create the publication, with 10 minutes afterward for some quick editing. The next day, The Parley will “publish” the issue as a PDF.
Mostly anything goes, as long as it only 60 minutes. While the first issue incorporated some “ad hoc sculpting,” Smith and co-creator Max Aetheling encourage participants to keep it to two dimensions. Still, for issue No. 2, they did end up cramming some Peeps into the scanner.
While artists like Alexa Meade have stopped by One-Hour Magazine events, plenty of the participants are “people who don’t think of themselves as artists in any sense of the word”. The only prerequisite is your RSVP. (But if you bring art supplies and snacks, that’s even better.)
The end product is different every time, although it’s typically more a work of Assemblage art than a vehicle for articles (there really are none). And Smith and Aetheling have no intention of taking it to print at this point. In Smith’s view, staying digital is in keeping with the publication’s fluidity: It’s never the same mix of contributors, and the events take place in different venues.