Dispatches from Austria: 3rd Annual Kunsthalle Wien Zine Fair

The Third Annual Independent Publisher and ARTZINE Fair was held this past weekend at the Kunsthalle Wien in the Museums Quartier in Vienna, Austria. The fair had over 50 exhibitors ranging from a group of local graphic students who pooled their money to buy a Risograph and some soy inks, to veteran publishers who were putting out quarterly magazines that could rival any major art publication in existence.

Had this flyer not been in English, the event would have slipped right past me.

Rather than approaching book fairs flippantly, glossing over entire booths and judging books by their covers, I decided to give the space a thorough investigation, break down language walls the best I could (more than 6 countries representing), and enjoy flipping through a lot of fantastic work. Let’s dive in.

Nieves (Zurich) table. Admittedly this is the table I was most excited to see. Self-control kept my spending to €4. Be sure to check out their overwhelming online library of awesome and diverse work.

Great wall and table of printed works by collective The Workshop (Vienna) and a newspaper published quarterly called “Franz the Lonely Austrionaut Magazine.”

Although the books were expected, I was extremely encouraged by all of the newspapers. It is already apparent that Europe has an incredible ease of access to offset printers that are willing to do small(ish) run jobs of 1,000 or more for very cheap, even cheaper if you know them personally. That is much less of a gamble in Vienna especially, where I’ve been handed 4 different newspapers on the street in one morning. The newspapers at the fair were all printed on a much higher-quality newsprint that a majority of the major printers use that is whiter than regular newsprint, much stronger, as well as a little thicker. It also holds its color much longer, and even if I die trying, I will find out the exact name and where I can order it.

Two great Risograph and laserjet publications by Gloria Glitzer (Berlin).

Extremely honest table from Extrem Deprimierende Zines (Vienna) (trans: Extremely Depressing Zines). The only “person” sitting behind the table was a cardboard cutout of a stick figure with a blue tear under his eye.

Really impressive work by ½ Zine (Amsterdam, Berlin, Paris, Rennes, Vienna) and a good credo. They do a quarterly publication under the ½ moniker that you can see on their site. I also recommend flipping through the Duplicata magazine on their site – it is Risograph and laserjet and it is on this wondrous European newsprint.

Great comics by Steve Reeder of MotMot (Vienna). Originally from L.A., Steve now lives and works in Vienna.

Quick Magazine (Berlin) is an amazing art publication with a great history, published by Our Press Publishing (Berlin), and is distributed by Motto (Berlin, Vancouver, Copenhagen, etc.), a distribution company that specializes in fanzines. All of that info is listed to help visualize the process of conception to manifestation. The editor (Arno Auer) has the idea, the publisher has the means of production (Our Press specializes in screenprint and Risograph), and the distributor does the distributing. It demonstrates a nice middle ground between copy shop Xeroxed self-published punk zines and Art Forum.

Too much good Riso work to take in by Applied Arts students, and collective SOYBOT (Vienna). And you can’t complain about a booth with an ethereal LED and some nice music on vinyl. Many hours were spent at this booth drooling.

Chipboard is the new black.

Nice graphic work and zine packaging by Edition Taube (Stuttgart).

And just in case the independent work wasn’t doing it for you, the museum felt it necessary to hang and display some of their permanent print and book work by Nauman, Ruscha, Rauschenberg, etc.

It was overt today at the fair that Riso is big, especially in Europe. Everyone has one, and everyone knows how to use them. Almost each booth had some connection to the duplicators, whether they owned one personally, had a friend who owned one, or went through a third party printer to publish their work. I’m calling it: desktop inkjet printers are the next big thing. Hold on to yours forever.

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2 Responses to “Dispatches from Austria: 3rd Annual Kunsthalle Wien Zine Fair”

  1. Moritz says:

    Thanks for your feature, Tale. It was realy nice to meet you and i’ll keep you up-to-date with the fixative-riso-red issue…

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