NMP 28: Revenge

NMP 28: Revenge

In this issue:

  • Editorial 28: Revenge – Mél Hogan and M-C MacPhee
  • Revenge as Radical Feminist Tactic in the SCUM Manifesto – Moynan King
  • Overcoming Bureaucracy: An Interview with Mandi A. Morgan – Katie Weldon
  • An Open Letter on the Subject of Life on Mars – Sarah Kember
  • Grad School Confidential: In Conversation with Steph Ceraso – Andrea Zeffiro
  • That One Isolated Moment: An Interview with Haley Morris-Cafiero – Jackie Wykes

Check out these submissions and many more at nomorepotlucks.org or order a print-on-demand version of our past issues to read in the tub, during a picnic, or on the metro.
If you’d like to submit your work to NMP, click here or email us at info at nomorepotlucks dot org.

Design Crush: Profiling Jacqueline Wallace

Design Crush: Profiling Jacqueline Wallace – Mél Hogan


In this piece I wanted to highlight the work of my good friend and collaborator, Jacqueline Wallace. Some people are incredible – yet incredibly understated – and so this became an opportunity for me to profile Jacquie’s work, which makes important connections between design, academia, and feminist politics. Together we tease out the intricacies of work, in and out of academia, from a start up called Veer to a dissertation about women’s cultural production.

MH: Can you talk about your background in design?

JW: I’ve always had a strong aesthetic sensibility, but I came to really know design by working at Veer. I was part of the startup team that founded the company in 2002. We produced, curated and distributed images, type and motion footage for use by creatives working in advertising, design and publishing. Veer wasn’t just a random start-up. Many of us had worked together at earlier companies in the visual media industry. When a number of us were spun out after an ownership change at the previous company, we felt there was still opportunity in the market, but we knew we needed to do things differently. The other major players in our market space were big, faceless companies–the Walmarts of the industry. Veer, on the other hand, was steeped in design. Our goal was to inspire creativity at every touch point. In fact, the company was purposefully called ‘Veer’ to diverge from the norm and disrupt an established market by presenting our products (digital photography, illustration, typefaces and motion footage) with imagination and style. We looked to appeal to the design sensibilities and “inner circle” of peers in the graphic design community who would understand the cultural references and vocabulary of our brand and voice, lend it credibility and find affinity with it.


NMP 27: Crush

NMP 27: Crush
NMP 27 Crush (mai/jun 2013) is out!

In this issue:

  • Editorial 27: Crush – Mél Hogan and M-C MacPhee
  • What Makes a Crush? by Ela Przybylo and Danielle Cooper with “Loop03″ by Jeff Kulak
  • Design Crush: Profiling Jacqueline Wallace by Mél Hogan
  • How To Not be Creepy by James P. Ascher
  • Last Butch Standing: Talking Fried Chicken, Analog to Digital, and The End of Butch with Lex Vaughn by Alex McClelland
  • It’s Good To Be Needed: A Conversation with Michèle Pearson Clarke by Tracy Tidgwell

Check out these submissions and many more at nomorepotlucks.org or order a print-on-demand version of our past issues to read in the tub, during a picnic, or on the metro.
If you’d like to submit your work to NMP, click here or email us at info at nomorepotlucks dot org.

NMP 26: Haunted

no. 26 – Haunted

mar–avr 2013

Online and print-on-demand journal of art, politics and culture
Magazine en ligne d’art, de politique et de culture, imprimé sur demande

Editorial 26: Haunted

Present and Absent: An Interview with Mitchell Akiyama – Yan Wu

Process and Production: An Interview with Nicole Robicheau – Mél Hogan

Deathlist – Sarah Mangle

Hail! – Jon Davies

Concrete (Indian) Futures: In Conversation with Nadya Kwandibens – Andrea Zeffiro

Read Online: www.nomorepotlucks.org
Order your print copy: http://www.lulu.com/spotlight/nomorepotlucks
Follow us on Twitter: @nomorepotlucks
Like us on Facebook: www.facebook.com/nomorepotlucks
Donate to NMP: Via paypal

NMP 25: Archive

NMP 25 Archive (jan/fev 2013) is out!

In this issue:

  • Editorial 25: Archive
  • Archiving ArtSpots with Mary Elizabeth Luka – Mél Hogan
  • An Introduction to the Women’s Liberation Music Archive – Nicole Emmenegger
  • Literary Archives, Fictional Truths and Material(reali)ties: The Yvonne Vera Project – Catherine Hobbs and Sarah Kastner
  • Personal Effects: The Material Archive of Gertrude Stein and Alice B. Toklas’s Domestic Life – Ann Cvetkovich
  • Fluid Locations: Discussing Archives and Representation with Sonia Boyce – Sally Frater
 Check out these submissions and many more at nomorepotlucks.org or order a print-on-demand version of our past issues to read in the tub, during a picnic, or on the metro.

If you’d like to submit your work to NMP, click here or email us at info at nomorepotlucks dot org.

Archiving ArtSpots with Mary Elizabeth Luka

Archiving ArtSpots with Mary Elizabeth Luka – Mél Hogan


What follows is an interview I conducted with M.E. Luka over the course of several months over email and Skype. Luka’s project explores CBC’s Artspots, a showcase of art and craft made by Canadian artists.


CBC ArtSpots giveaway for artists, crew, Advisory Group volunteers. Image courtesy of M.E. Luka.

Mél Hogan: In a few lines, can you tell me, what is ArtSpots today?

Mary Elizabeth Luka: It’s a reminder that Canadian visual art exists and has enormous range. Also that it can flourish in tandem with popular culture / broadcast media, when resources are applied, creative control is shared, and a focused conversation is generated around it. The current website (if I can call it current!) is a placeholder – or a kind of elaborate bookmark. Traces of media production remain, including visual images (mostly stills), text, and broken video links, as well as navigation and still-functioning connecting links (e.g. to other websites). Additionally, some of the 1,200 short videos produced during that period are still played on television from time to time, usually late-night, or used by the artists involved to promote their own work.

>> more

NMP 24: Panique

NMP 24 Panique (nov/dec 2012)

  • Editorial 24: Panique
  • Jeremy Kai Captures the Dark Side – NMP
  • Anxious States and the Co-optation of Métisness – Jennifer Adese
  • Jane Doe: To Serve and Protect- Karen Herland
  • Clash of the Neoliberals: Obama’s Shell Game – Yasmin Nair
  • Goodbye Gene Simmons – Rae Spoon and Nazmia Jamal
  • Qu’entends-tu par “performance”? A Conversation with Chantal Dumas – Owen Chapman
  • “People this 2012 shit is hype” by Mél Hogan – M-C MacPhee

Search Strings

Search Strings

I’m starting a new collection project that deals with Search Strings. These are words people use to search out content – in my example below, to get to online and p.o.d journal, nomorepotlucks.org. As part of an ongoing research interest in digital archiving and media archaeology, I’m starting to think about the role of these Search Strings; how they define, organise and indadvertedly help us theorize the site over time. Because nomorepotlucks.org has no stated mandate, no explicit function to carry out, no funding or sponsors, and no markers beyond the community that shape it, these strings give us insight into the direct or accidental trajectories to the journal. More thinking on this to come… but for now, it remains pretty clear what people are searching for (whether or not they find it in NMP)…

These are stats for the first 3 days of September, for the new issue ‘dirt’. A full month produces hundreds upon hundreds of these strings…

Hits Search String
—————- ———————-

3 5.77% http://nomorepotlucks.org/site/fuck-positive-women
3 5.77% liz brockest
2 3.85% au quebecil pleut comment ils disent
2 3.85% catfight with nurse
2 3.85% gay cock
2 3.85% love berlant and negri
2 3.85% magie pentru sex
2 3.85% no more potlucks
2 3.85% nomorepotlucks
2 3.85% sex magic
1 1.92% 1970s weightlifters
1 1.92% agustin 2007 migration agency
1 1.92% anal sex lover
1 1.92% aunty joan lesbian
1 1.92% autoethnography anecdotal
1 1.92% bdsm race play landscapes
1 1.92% cock gay
1 1.92% eliza chandler
1 1.92% garry lewis james osterberg
1 1.92% gay cock play
1 1.92% gay cock.
1 1.92% hardt politics of love
1 1.92% homonationalism
1 1.92% indie drawings
1 1.92% lakota face paint
1 1.92% louise hay t-shirts
1 1.92% mark leckey
1 1.92% mary bryson course in affect
1 1.92% momoko loving you too much
1 1.92% montreal sex chat rooms
1 1.92% printmaking performance art
1 1.92% sean dockray
1 1.92% self anal fucking
1 1.92% sex veined
1 1.92% strangers to fuck
1 1.92% suzy malik artist toronto
1 1.92% the dirty heather
1 1.92% transexoual porno very hart
1 1.92% velma.candyass

NMP 23: Dirt

NMP 23 Dirt (sept/oct 2012)
This issue is guest edited by Heather Davis. It features:

  • Editorial 23: Dirt
  • The Anus is the Night – Etienne Turpin
  • Ethnographic Anecdotes from the Junk Shop – C Smith
  • Imperceptibly Dirty – Zach Blas
  • Whitedirt.com – A. Laurie Palmer
  • DIRTY WORKS: Constructing an Efficacious Practice – Neal Robinson
  • Falling for an Idea – Micah Donovan
  • Of Worldliness and Being Otherwise: A Conversation with Elizabeth Grosz – Heather Davis
  • If This Rock Could Speak: A Tour of Mark Leckey’s BigBoxNaturalAction – Louis Kamenka
  • Brouillards électroniques. Conversation avec Jean-Pierre Aubé – Nathalie Casemajor Loustau
  • Watering the Dirt – Micha Cárdenas
  • Dirt Piles – Lisa Hirmer

Opening the Archives @ Console-ing Passions 2012 – Boston


Below is a very rough draft of my talk at Console-ing Passions 2012. Ideas in this presentation need a lot of flushing out, but here it is…

Paper Title:
No More Potlucks: Media Archeology as Feminist Archival Intervention


This presentation focuses on the archival trajectory of Canadian queer feminist DIY journal of
arts, nomorepotlucks.org. Specifically, it looks at the significance of the project’s digital traces
for speaking to the artist, activist, and academic communities it has represented over the course
of the last eight years.

Nomorepotlucks.org was launched in 2003 and served as a virtual posting board for queer
feminist events in Montreal (Canada). At the time, it was a hand-coded static html website,
where new events replaced past ones, showcasing only the current as a means to connect
people to events in the city. The posting board was decidedly local. In 2005 the site shifted to its
first content management system (CMS) but retained much of the same purpose. However, as a
CMS, past events were ‘archived’ and remained on the site as new events were added. In 2009,
nomorepotlucks.org was revamped conceptually and technologically to become an online and
print-on-demand journal of arts and politics, showcasing a new issue every 2 months. In those
years it shifted from open source CMS, Drupal to WordPress, primarily as a growing concern for
the project’s preservation.

As the cofounder of the journal and as the web developer and technician for the project, I
explain in detail the archival trajectory of the project and its political implications. In particular, I
attempt to tease out the ways in which archival strategies are always in part a product of the
politics of the social movement they emerge from.As a creative feminist intervention, I invite reflection on the kind of archival analysis that invariably creates for the archive as much as it draws (archaeologically) from it. This
presentation therefore revolves around the notion of archival intervention as creative
contribution, and attempts to give concrete examples of media archaeology, as a queer feminist
methodology and tactic (Cvetkovich 2002; Ketelaar 2002; Takahashi 2007; Chun 2008; Parikka

My talk will be in two parts – one part which I will read to you and one part as a kind of media archaeology demo.

What I hope to demonstrate (if not reiterate) in this short presentation is that archival theory is not a corpus reserved merely for the day-to-day practicalities of archivists. Rather, I want to underline how it is also deeply implicated in the processes of media researchers, scholars, activist, artists, and practitioners: those who make use of the archives, intervene from within, and critically engage in its possibilities and limitations. This relationship — between use, intervention, engagement, and the archive — becomes central to questioning the role of the archive as source, as long intimated by those dealing most closely with issues of ownership, exile, and representation in relation to archival theory. Such issues of power may resonate, but too often get disconnected from larger technological discourses.

What I propose here is that as a result of theorizing the archive in this way—adjoining political voices with technological practicalities—we can move toward an increasingly self-reflexive approach to archiving that accounts for the documentation of research processes, and deliverables, as not only integral to methodology, but as elemental to rigorous scholarly output and critical production practices. Within this revised and revived framework, the archive has the potential to shift conceptually, from repository, place, database, and source, to trajectory, performance, or what Wendy Chun calls the enduring ephemeral, where “raw and abstracted material created as part of research processes and which may be used again as the input to further research – carries with it the burden of capturing and preserving not only the data itself, but information about the methods by which it was produced”. Determining the bounds of the archive — as enacted, embodied or performed — rather than solely conceived as place, space, or repository — is inextricably linked to the possible knowledges produced about it, and the legitimacy of voices, histories, politics, and testimonies it enables. It is also, however, about what falls out and fails, and what these perceived failures reveal about a researcher’s subject-position vis-à-vis the archive. These are preoccupations particularly well addressed, through a media archaeology framework – even and especially as media archaeology remains open to interpretation–; which is, according to Jussi Parikka: “much more than paying theoretical attention to the intensive relations between new and old media, mediated through concrete and conceptual archives; increasingly, media archaeology is a method for doing media design and art.” This attention to ‘doing’ media and design is particularly important for the point I’m trying to make through nomorepotlucks.org, an example that I hope will demonstrate that the archive can be an ongoing and creative endeavour circulating through the queer networks that activate and maintain it.

By way of nomorepotlucks and various design projects I am involved in, I have become interested in the movement and mutations of digital culture. I’m less interested in dichotomies of materiality and immateriality, or in the distinctions between traditional physical repository and database, which are often – still – the more common points of contrast in relation to the archive’s potential. Instead, my interest is focused on different modalities of access, and the possible reworkings of the politics of ownership of the archive: to occupy the archive, and to inhabit it instead.

If the archive prioritizes the future, it not only anchors but also justifies its position as mediator and safeguard, and with this, the notion that human interaction with artefacts run many risks that are counter to the preservation of an original and arrested moment – through tampering, decay, errors and so on. Preservation, to this end, has meant a necessary distance between precious originals, for the sake of long-term access; — however it is rarely made explicit when this end point is expected to be, and for whom this later access is reserved.

Several examples show the ways in which preservation has meant inaccessibility, and has been justified through a rhetoric of future potential that is inherently greater than what a present connection can seemingly ever afford.

The Lascaux caves in southwestern France, which are estimated to house vast murals of drawings that are more than 17 000 years old are now being taken over by mold because of preservation efforts that try to control the humidity of the caves. The Lascaux caves have been closed to the public since 1963. A website allows viewers a virtual tour, and there exists a replica of two of the caves that people can visit, located about 200 meters away from the original caves.

Similarly, the Bettmann Archive is a collection of 19 million or so photographs and images owned by Corbis (Bill Gates) since the mid 1990s. Corbis moved the archive into the Iron Mountain National Underground Storage Facility, located 70 m/200 feet below ground in western Pennsylvania, in a space deemed to be at optimal temperature for long-term storage. Only images considered to have commercial resale value are digitized and made public (less than 2 percent of the collection). The rest remains underground under lock and key.

These are just two examples but they are sufficient to at least highlight the paradox we’ve come to largely accept — that preservation privileges so called long-term historical value, which must by definition be out of the reach of the present. While long term preservation is important in many cases, it is largely a framework that relies on the perceived scarcity of material and often singular objects, and as such, may not be fully equipped to account for digital culture – for which mutation, viral proliferation and ephemerality should arguably be informing the framework.

I think this becomes an opportunity to do archival work differently, in line with postcolonial feminists politics that counter the archive’s proposed linearity and quest for a singular truth. As Anjali Arondekar puts it, questioning the archive as source still “coheres around a temporally ordered seduction of access, which stretches from the evidentiary promise of the past into the narrative possibilities of the future” (2005, 5). To think of the archive as a creative act, then, is to consider means by which to assemble stories, as a mode of ‘doing’ that records its own performance. And, as Ann Laura Stoler puts it, where fragments have the potential to speak differently depending on their configuration. This is the kind of archival potential we have tried to activate through nomopotlucks.org – a Canadian journal of arts and politics, as portraits of proclivities. In short, I’m proposing that a publication – and all its offshoots (especially its intangible ephemeral offshoots) constitute an archive that privileges mutations through circulation, and situates the communities through which the project circulates as its inhabitants.

Articles and arts works from nomorepotlucks are reprinted in other journals, in course packs, republished or pulled from personal blogs, academic papers or larger art projects, tweeted and retweeted, favorited, and posted on a Facebook wall, copied and pasted in part or in full into new venues for dissemination and so on — which together constitute the inhabited archive, where movement through social media and personal networks preserve both the project’s momentum and identity.

As the cofounder of nomorepotlucks.org, and as the person who does the technical and design work for the journal, I’m — in many ways — in a privilege position to also “archive” it, because a lot about what makes technology interesting for me, archivally anyway, is in the politics that shape access. But the flipside is that I might be too close to the material to even be able to assess the significance of its archive. To archive is always in some ways to assume value. Despite this ambivalence, my goal is to initiate a conversation about what a media archaeology approach might uncover for nomorepotlucks, and in so doing, tease out the ways that archival strategies are always, in part, a product the politics of the social movements from which they emerge, but also of individuals within a movement who are specifically “located.”  Positioning oneself within the archive – as a feminist tactic in itself — brings awareness to how the process of archiving invariably creates for the archive as much as it draws (archaeologically) from it. And I’m obviously not the first person to make that point (but I’m skipping over the Derrida and Foucault references today).

So, if you have a laptop or mobile device, type in: “nomorepotlucks.org” – or look up and follow along on the screen, and I’m going to circulate a print copy of the journal as well, so you can see what I’m talking about. I’m also — in thinking about the panel as “opening the archive” going to pass around a USB key with an almost complete collection of the articles, including the latest issue, but not including the video or audio files.

I’m doing this so that we can later talk about what this kind of archive does, what its limits are, how its content circulate, or fail to, and what role the network (or community) plays in the performance of preservation and access at various levels. We can also include in that conversation issues of access, copyright and creative commons licensing—each ideals of ownership–which is the reason some of the audio and video doesn’t circulate as freely as text.

I will be showcasing early iterations of the site, coded in html in 2003, via the Internet Archive Wayback Machine. For the second iteration, created using CMS Textpattern, I will navigate the site by way of backs up copies made onto CDs in 2004 and 2005. Following this, the site shifted to CMS Drupal, which is no longer available online, but for which I’ve exported the database for perusal (in PDF, SQL and XML versions). But first, I will show the current version, featuring issue # 22: Record. If asked what Nomorepotlucks is, most likely the latest iteration of the project speaks loudest.


3 main takeaways from this presentation, up for discussion:

1-    media archaeology allows for a recognition of the archive as a process that necessitates exposing one’s methods for research, recovery, and excavation.

2-    the idea that the archive becomes an act of creation – it is part of the creative process and part of the design thinking and doing – rather than an afterthought, or concern for the future.

3-    preservation can be positioned as a kind of archival awareness that is equivalent to inhabitation, rather than a statement about ownership and control over culture, or of and over time, and/or of proprietary archival spaces. Inhabitation is about an embodied notion of preservation – which literally means “to be present in” and to occupy.