Pop-up Zine Library at the University of Maryland

10 Apr

On April 5th we held a pop-up zine library in the Women’s Studies Multimedia Studio at UMD (we being myself and Women’s Studies PhD student Melissa Rogers), as “a day-long celebration of feminist self-publishing and DIY cultural activism”. Overall I would say the event was a splendid success–we had a steady stream of visitors including 3 classes of undergrads who were very excited to get their hands on some typewriter keys and gluesticks. The “library” was comprised of several components–over 200 zines (basically mine and Melissa’s collections), alphabetized, cataloged, and shelved; two computers with tabs pulled up with online interviews, podcasts, distros, and archives; a reading area with a coffee table collection of books about zines; and zine-related craft activities, particularly making a page for a compilation zine and learning to make a mini-zine. The catalog, workshop instructions, as well as a list of zine-related resources was all combined into a program for the event. We definitely learned some lessons, like that over 200 zines looks kind of skimpy on a bookshelf, and don’t stand up very well, and are less attractive to browsers than zines hung up on ribbon with clothespins. In general though, I think that everyone who came had fun (I definitely did) and folks left with some new knowledge. This is sort of a quick update since as usual I’m multi-tasking, but I’ll probably post more pics, especially comp zine pics, later.

Here are a couple pictures–I tried to only grab ones with my friends in them so they can yell at me if they don’t want their pictures up, so these don’t capture the masses that descended upon the library, but they do capture some of the activities and the space.

Working on compilation zine pages.

Melissa teaches typewriter skills.

Mid-library carnage--the cardboard alphabet dividers proved no match.

I had to include Rachel's cute outfit.

Zine making is fun!

Anyway I’d love to talk to folks who have done or are interested in doing similar events–we’re planning to do a variation in D.C. in May through the D.C. Zinefest Collective.

–JB

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