By Jeremy Arias
It feels like years have gone by since Art Block started receiving submissions for Volume 5, Issue 2, Behind the Scenes. It seems like the idea started in one world and flourished in another.
We appreciate all the submissions you sent from the depths of your quarantines. In times of darkness, it’s the artist who paints the picture of a brighter time yet to come. The creative mind that can cast tears from spells of poetry is the type of mind that can think of solutions. It’s the nerds with their noses plugged into books who can imagine a better world, we’ve been to several, and this one needs work.
We’ve had the pleasure of reviewing your art and we’re working on putting the next issue together. Like the rest of the world, we were impacted by the pandemic and our gears slowed down as we adjusted to working from home. We appreciate your patience and continued support of emerging artists.
While we were wrapping up our last issue, we started brainstorming the theme for our next issue and settled on “Word on the Street.”
What’s the word on the street? How does it get around? How would it get around? Does the way it gets around change what’s said? What made your street different? What events happened that the world has missed out on for so long? What was the word your parents gave to keep you inside?
Does your mom gossip to your next-door neighbor about the people across the street? Does the elotero give you the occasional scoop? What does the tagging on the wall say? Can you counter the broken windows theory?
We’re excited to hear what you have to say, see what you imagine, and feel what you create. Stay tuned and stay safe Arts Fam!
By Tanya Sotelo
It has been almost three years since Melina, the Editor in chief of Aurtistic Zine, and I first met and she invited me on the adventure that is Aurtistic. When she first told me of her idea, I thought it was amazing. When she asked me to be a part of it, I said yes immediately, although I will be honest: I thought she couldn’t be serious asking me, someone she had just met, to work with on this endeavor of hers. I soon found out that although Melina has a wicked sense of humor, she never jokes about her projects. Fast forward to now, we have three zines completed. Issue three of Aurtistic Zine is currently off to be polished up and printed, and our work for the next issue has begun.
It was my go at deciding the theme for the next issue. We of course had a team meeting to discuss what still needed to be done for issue three and what to do next. It’s still surreal to me to have meetings virtually and not be in the same space, but I am glad to do that for the safety of everyone involved, and it doesn’t impede us from creating. Which inevitably led to the theme for the coming issue. There really was no way to not incorporate what is happening globally. We are still in the thick of it and nothing is certain. With that in mind I felt I could also share the theme here, because although the theme is for Aurtistic, the sentiment is not exclusive to it.
Many of us have lost the comfort of our routines and have been flung into uncertain waters. With the strangeness of this new reality in mind, our theme for the next issue of Aurtistic Zine is: Creation through Chaos. Show us how you are existing through these chaotic times. Did you subdue the chaos, overcome it, or perhaps make a friend of it? Are you finding solace in creation? Are you making new routines to replace the old? Or has social distancing been your normal and you are now finding yourself as a guide to those who are having difficulties navigating this new reality?
By Jesus Hernandez
La Niña Extraña comes from Art Block Zine's Featured Artist, Jesus Hernandez on Volume 4, Issue 2. More work, as well as an interview with Angelica Castañeda. When asked what advice he would give to upcoming artists in his field, Hernandez replied:
"Don't be afraid and don't worry what others think of you. Keep pushing yourself to improvement and exposing yourself to the world. There's always going to be that one person who'll help you achieve your goals."
More of Hernandez's work and the full interview can be found on Art Block Zine's Volume 4, Issue 2 titled Processing.
To learn more about Art Block Zine, you can visit their page here.
To purchase your copy of Processing you can visit our store here.
By Fox Reyes
Foxcat is a drawing by Fox Reyes, submit and featured in Aurtistic Zine Volume 1 Issue 2 titled Perception.
Aurtistic Zine is open to Autistic individuals and their families. To learn more about Aurtistic Zine, you can visit their page here.
To purchase your copy of Perception, you can visit our store.
By Jeremy Arias
These past few days have felt like the script of a poorly written movie. Unfortunately, there’s a deadly virus spreading across the globe and the world’s leaders are the most incompetent, greedy, egocentric mobsters robbing us of our democracy and health.
Our best course of action according to doctors, the news, and everyone everywhere I go, is social distancing. While this might sound like government mandated depressive symptoms in an Orwellian novel, its long term effects may not be so different. We might have to sacrifice a piece of our mental wellness in the name of our physical well being.
As an introvert, a part of me likes the idea that I don’t need much of an excuse to stay at home, read a book, or even squeeze in some time for a video project and writing I’m working on ;) The world has told me that it’s the healthy thing to do. I could be a danger to others, and they can be a danger to me.
My college classes have been moved online, which means I don’t have to worry about waking up early for school, I can just stay up for the rest of the night and finish a month’s worth of work in a couple hours.
The market is no longer crowded, sure there might not be much on the shelves, but at least everyone’s butts will be clean when they finish all that hoarded food. The massive polluter known as the airline industry is rumored to go bankrupt after a few months of this behavior, and businesses are finally finding efficient ways to let their employees work from home.
People are demanding human rights as the virus highlights many of our systems flaws. As fear of the virus grows, so does the public’s concern with health, covering their cough, washing their hands, and spreading awareness instead of germs.
While it’s recommended to be socially isolated or self quarantined, it’s important to remember to engage in some social activity to maintain psychological wellness. There’s other ways to maintain a good social functioning, even if you’re getting tired of the people already at home.
Call or text a friend, this virus isn’t a downloadable one disguised as a cute dog video, so call a friend and see how they’re doing. Play with a pet, I read recently that dogs couldn’t contract the virus, so you’re safe to keep your four legged friend close as you stand guard against the virus. If people and animals are scarce, talk to plants!
Now is an especially great time to have a garden. As the market shelves were clearing, I was thinking about the lettuce and tomatoes I planted months ago. Having a source of food growing in your backyard is beneficial not only in times like these, but any time. Growing plants is another way of bringing life into the planet, and if you take care of your plants for long enough, they will take care of you.
It is psychologically satisfying to watch plants grow, and talking to your plants gives them air to breathe. Plants breathe in carbon dioxide, the stuff we breathe out, so as you talk to your plants, you give them a breath of air, and they listen to your vents.
Remember that while we may feel physically disconnected, we are all just the push of a button away from each other. It’s tests like these that make us stronger and more prepared for the future. We may be isolated, but this is a social isolation. Stay safe, stay connected, and stay healthy!
The content displayed here is submitted by various local authors, artists, and more, and is curated by the DSTL Arts Art Block Zine–Editorial Board. Works published here are done so with the permission of all artists involved. Artists hold all rights to their work, and none of it may be reproduced without their permission.