And Onto The Next Big Bang Idea
May 2, 2010
posted by Caroline Picard
what follows is a series of descriptions of the different facets of the proposed new green lantern endeavor. still looking for a space as yet and consequently what follows is kind of like a working, though far-along, sketch of what’s to come. in other words, some of the names may still be changed, some of the specifics too. that said, you’ll still get a solid and (hopefully) concise play-by-play. woohoo!
and onto the Next
big bang idea
Lantern Projects 2010 – onwards
The umbrella for this new vision is Lantern Projects. Under this new structure, contingent practices, in the form of non-profit and for-profit businesses, rely on one another to sustain the energy and financial stability of independent cultural production and dissemination.
What was once an apartment space is born anew as a storefront. A bookstore featuring curated books put out by independent presses. The bookstore shares a counter with a cafe that sells coffee. The cafe is also a bar that sells beer. There are tables in this storefront and a hallway along its side. Down the hallway, you will see a door to the basement. The basement has public performances, ranging from live music events, to improv comedy, to lectures, to performances, plays, artist talks, readings and screenings. Upstairs, there is The Green Lantern Gallery, subsidized this time, not by an apartment, but rather by the dynamic activities below.
Four people run this space. In addition there are three yearlong artists-in-residence who also work at the cafe. They keep office hours and meet with the public on a rotating basis. They are here to work on specific projects, projects that engage with the resources of the space and the community.
In order to further integrate each element of the larger project—the gallery, the press, the performance space and the bookstore—we have decided to center a yearlong investigation (2010-2011) on the idea of ecology. The idea of ecology provides a thematic framework through which our projects can be viewed and understood and also reflects the interrelatedness of the space, mirroring a horizontal administrative infrastructure in which a synergy of parts maintains the whole.
In this organization neither the gallery nor the press nor the bookstore is a closed system, rather those spaces are environments dedicated to the exploration, presentation and discussion of the traditional and often hierarchical means of organizing culture. Through that investigation we hope to break open current systems in order to supply alternative dynamisms: messy, vibrant, and innovative collaborations between artists, audiences, mediums and ideas.
Green Lantern Gallery
THE GREEN LANTERN GALLERY is a venue dedicated to exhibiting emerging and mid-career artists working in all media who push disciplinary boundaries and explore experimental processes. The Gallery’s thematic exhibitions and artist projects are thought experiments, models for critical and social engagement, poetic ruminations, and interrogations of the creative process from all angles. Committed to forming alternative and sustainable models for the distribution and presentation of noncommercial contemporary art, the nonprofit Gallery is partnered with the for-profit Cafe and The Corpse Performance Space to mutually support the Lantern Projects community and contribute to the sustainability of contemporary artists’ practices.
Green Lantern Press
THE GREEN LANTERN PRESS is a paperback company specializing in the publication and distribution of emerging and forgotten works. Dedicated to the “slow media” approach, we see the book as an intimate and portable exhibition site. Each book features some variety of silk-screened covers, color plates collected from the working practice of independent artists and thematic texts from writers. Each work is printed in small, collector’s editions of 250 – 500. This is in keeping with a general attitude about consumerism and the material we print, namely that we intend to print only what can be sold while demonstrating an intuitive bridge between mediums. Work submitted by authors/artists is done so on a donation basis. We manage all printing and distribution costs. We do not keep the rights of any book, but ask to be notified of any re-printings.
THE GREEN LANTERN PRESS is distributed by SPD in Berkeley, CA, and sold through PAPER CAVE, an on-line and bricks-and-mortar bookstore.
An example of how we integrate “ecology” into the projects we curate
In 2010/11 THE GREEN LANTERN PRESS will contribute a number of books that explore the subject of environment and hierarchy on their own respective terms. While these works do not present a single world-view, they interpret different systems with different tools, critiquing the viability of those systems while creating new platforms of investigation. The Book Of The Mutation Of Fortune presents a skewed mirror of fairy tale fiction in which Erica incorporates medieval witchcraft and fortune telling with contemporary motifs. Amira Hanafi’s Forgery, meanwhile, appropriates language from various sources and patchworks that information in a prose-poem quilt that investigates the relationship between a dinosaur industry and the city that sprung up around it. A.E. Simns First Impressions First Touch* indexes the handshake, revealing the inherent power play of every greeting while simultaneously transforming it into a child’s game. On the other side of the spectrum, Gerry Kapolka’s Kordian, a Polish play (pub. 1800s) translated for the first time in English, describes a coming-of age story that parallels Poland’s transition from Romanticism to Modernism. In addition to these titles, a limited edition chapbook (No. 3 in the Pocket Lantern Series) features the best-of collection of flash fiction from an on-line site, fictionatwork, and a book about off-site art practice called Service Media which will be released in conjunction with a group show by editor, artist and curator Stuart Keeler. Each book examines a different ecology, a different and seemingly independent system. In doing so THE GREEN LANTERN PRESS hopes to achieve a kaleidoscope effect, one both informative and resonant with visual and performative exhibitions.
*This video documents one of the many handshakes that will be included in FIFTH:
The Corpse Performance Space
Through performances, lectures, and conversations with and against the site of Lantern Projects, THE CORPSE hopes to create a dynamic public entry point to The Green Lantern Gallery and The Green Lantern Press as an evolving point of confluence. Where possible, specific considerations will be made to work through the separately reflexive and coded language of the arts and humanities, sciences, and politics in the interest of creating an inclusive, learned, and politely speculative environment.
Every year, COPRSE Director works in tandem with the Gallery Director to create no less than three annual series reflective of the concerns engaged with during each gallery show. Those series would take place over three month increments. In addition, two-four series should be planned each season separate from, but not necessarily inapplicable to, the gallery show. With these latter series, the Director will seek the input of outside programmers, allowing as much programming to come from the surrounding Chicago community as possible. Similar to the role the Director plays with the Gallery Director, outside programmers will be expected to work in tandem with the Director to make sure programming, per season, is unified, if not monistic. In creating and soliciting programming, the Director will favor those in search of clarity, both reasonable and wide-eyed, all the while creating a space, ultimately, for inclusion rather than exclusion. These ideals will be expected and understood by the participants in programming.
Paper Cave is a curated bookstore that speaks directly to the issues manifesting in the physical space. Titles include texts that supplement gallery exhibitions and public performances, as well as independent presses. In addition, small presses and print projects will be invited to present exhibitions in the display case located in the cafe. The titles in this store should inform the larger agenda of the space, namely to demonstrate the relationship between various theoretical practices which address a common subject. Each year guests will be invited to supply a list of works that address that common subject. The bookstore will then carry those books.
The Holon Residency Program
What is it?
Lantern Projects invites persons of any discipline to apply for our unique artist-in-residency program. Residents will be employed part-time by the Lantern Projects Café, and in exchange The Green Lantern Gallery, The Green Lantern Press and/or The Corpse Performance Space will incubate a self-directed creative project. We are looking for ambitious, creative people who are engaged in interdisciplinary art practices, interested in developing alternative models for the distribution and presentation of their work, and want to be part of a unique art organization that is engaged with the values of small business, independent press, non-commercial art practice and critical dialogue. Projects can take the form of public programming, curatorial projects for the gallery, and/or publication projects, and/or public performance. Residents can choose to work exclusively with the Press or the Performance Space or the Gallery or propose a combination of the three.
How it works:
Residencies are available in 12-month increments. Residents are expected to work 25 hours a week and hold monthly office hours which will be open to the public. As Cafe employees, residents will primarily serve drinks and assist in general maintenance/upkeep of space, supervised by the Paper Cave Director, and earn $260/week. Residents can also choose to join Lantern Projects group health insurance plan.
There is no dedicated “studio” space but residents have access to shared office space and can use programming and gallery space based on availability and project needs. Applicants should take these parameters into consideration however they see fit. We welcome proposals that range from independent research and study to more public-oriented projects that engage with the Green Lantern community.
No previous experience with cafe work required though we are looking for people who will be responsible employees willing to learn in a fast-paced environment. Lantern Projects is a team effort and we are seeking applicants who are enthusiastic, and have a sense of humor and an interest in helping our business model succeed.
We do not provide accommodations but we can assist you in looking for places to live. (we are not accepting applications at this time)