Meet Your Zine Maker #4: The Center for the Duplicated Arts
The Center for the Duplicated Arts is a new zine project by photographer Melissa Grance. Through processes of repetition and duplication, the project explores how the copy becomes the original work of art.
Your work focuses on original images and their copies (of copies, of copies…) What inspired you to start duplicating yourself?
Photography inspired me to start duplicating myself. The medium is about reproduction. I surrender to this idea, but I’m also trying to rebel against it. For example, the sole purpose of the copy machine that exists in every office environment is to duplicate a document. However, if you make a copy of a copy and so on, the original starts to fade away into a cluster of dots. I made at least one hundred copies and couldn’t quite get a clean white piece of paper. It sounds silly, but it fascinated me.
How did you start making zines? What keeps you working in this medium?
The Center for the Duplicated Arts is my first zine series. I was inspired to create one after attending the Small Press Expo in Bethesda, MD with my h usband who is an illustrator. Most of the printed material was sequential art and completely different from my work. I had this idea about duplication in my head for a while. The zine seemed like the perfect format to make this abstract concept more tangible. The reason I would like to continue in this medium is that much like photography it’s very democratic.
What do you like about the zine community?
My first exposure to the zine community was actually at the Richmond Zine Fest this year. It was a fun experience and made me miss going to school in San Francisco and being surrounded by artists.
What is your favorite zine that you’ve found recently?
When I was at the Richmond Zine Fest I picked up a copy of Womanimalistic by Caroline Paquita. It’s interesting because the inks blend into more than one color on a page. In the back of the zine, she explains that she used a Risograph Duplicator. I’m not exactly clear about the process, but I think it is difficult to duplicate an exact copy of each zine because of the mixing of the inks. So naturally I found this very interesting.
What expectations do you have for the Brooklyn Zine Fest?
I expect to meet several interesting zine-makers. I’d also like to have interesting dialogues with the people who attend the Brooklyn Zine Fest.