Thank you for finding us. This is a brain child I had while trying to navigate a life where Netflix and yoga were my only hobbies. I was seeking something creative, but also something restorative and communal. I found magazines when I was quite young, after the women in my family would share their subscriptions with each other, and I would sit and flip pages for hours. I still consider Twitter to be a virtual magazine of sorts, and still have a physical subscription to Vogue magazine. The creative, feminist community approach to creating this magazine was natural for me. Tita is a Goddess, and so are our other contributors.
The Asylum, the respite, the clearing amongst the chaos, has been harder to seek. I wanted this piece of art and work to combine in a solace of sorts from the unconnectedness of my everyday life (or so it felt). I wanted to seek asylum in the beautiful words and images and thoughts of feminists like me, who needed to express their feelings in their own ways. The asylum, for me, is still developing.
When I am meditating I think of a place in a damp cool clearing with waves, hard wood floors, a fireplace, and a large oversized burnt red armchair large enough to pull my legs onto. You know the sort of imaginings, the dream, the quiet, happy place that we all have. That’s mine, and I imagined briefly that this magazine might be the creative, digital embodiment of that space.
Right now it isn’t, not for fault, and not for reasons I can explain, but I don’t think it needs to be nor was it what I was looking for.
I wasn’t just looking for asylum, but I was looking for a community of humans who respect each other’s needs and thoughts, and do so in an inclusive environment. I needed asylum from bureaucracy, from stress over money, from stress over deadlines, from stress about if something is right or not.
I found that here.
Welcome to Feminist Space Camp, we are so so glad you are here. Find asylum from what you need. Let us know, and we will help you.
Daniel Johnston’s 1983 song “Story of an Artist” is currently featured in Apple’s latest Mac commercial. In the full version of the song, Johnston croons about people not understanding why this artist continues to be an artist. They call him ill; they say no one will ever like what he does. They say how dare you have the gall to call yourself an artist.
At the end of the commercial, the words Make something wonderful...behind the Mac fill the screen. High-five to Apple supporting artists and wanting people to make art using their computers. I write this from a Mac (which, yes, I love), but I’m not here to sell the brand or computers. I’m here to say I liked the commercial because Johnston’s nostalgic song hits home for me. And I’m sure it does for other artists also.
I find that some people have a hard time understanding art as an occupation. Not only the artists who dedicate their careers to art, but actually occupying one’s time with art, whether that art be the sand sculptures a person does on the beaches of Puerto Vallarta that eventually get washed away or stepped on, or the songs of the guitarist who stands on the corner of Bloor-Yonge in Toronto strumming against the congestion of city life, or a collection of feminist words like the ones you’ll find in this magazine.
After years of trying to figure out why I’m drawn to a life that promises very little pay unless I hit it Harry Potter-big, I realized I occupy my life with art because art fuels my spirit. It connects me to other people around the world. I can stare at a painting of a sunflower and be brought to someone else’s mind. I can watch a body move on a stage or read the words of a poet and feel.
Film connects people all the time because of its accessibility (who doesn’t have Netflix these days?). Certain theatres, ballet, and even concerts are so heavily priced that they are unattainable for those who don’t have a six-figure salary. These art forms are then deemed elitist and this is why some people will say, “$150 for a ticket? I don’t even like the theatre anyway.” They’ll go with the $10 movie ticket. This happens with literary magazines too. Some can be incredibly specific that I’ve had trouble seeing where I can fit my own writing into that exclusive world.
So here I am, partnered with my sweet co-editor Jessica. We are not getting paid to run this magazine. Maybe one day we will receive funding (super cool), but for now this is volunteer and our contributors have volunteered their time and energy to take part in this honest home of feminists.
Here, unlike the artist in Johnston’s song, we are not walking alone. We are reaching our hands out from Canada and the USA and Central America and India and Europe as artists. We are among the flowers together.
Thank you for joining us.