AFTER SASS: Reimaging Identity & Representation in Zine Culture

June 15, 2022, 6-8pm
June 21, 2022, 6-8pm

Sass + Zines was an annual zine fair initiated in 2017 by a small group of talented cartoonists and zine creators of color. This beloved Booklyn program provided a space for emerging, established, and historically marginalized artists and publishers to exhibit, share, and sell their work. It was presented again in 2018 and in 2019. After a two-year hiatus during the worldwide COVID-19 pandemic, this program emerges with a new name, After Sass, a provocation that reminds us that representation isn’t enough. 

Zines have been a critical tool for creative and political expression among queer gender variant people of color in print for a long time. Zines are a mechanism for community education and an expression of our personal stakes in taking ownership of our information and knowledge production. They belong to a long history of radical counterculture and print media from the anti-slavery pamphlets of the 1700s, anti-lynching pamphlets of the 1800s, Du Boisian pamphlets and the Harlem Renaissance’s little magazines of the 1900s, aboveground underground newspapers of the 1960s, 70s, and 80s, to the punk and Riot Grrrl zines of the 1990s and beyond. 

Yet in today’s age of neoliberal capitalism, it’s increasingly difficult to express oneself and avoid cooptation into the status quo in the name of representation. To truly support and celebrate each other we must remember the radical history that makes zines possible, sharpen our political analysis and revive the rigor from which we approach the community care that sustains our zine-making practices.

Join as we learn and unlearn an intergenerational and queer history of zines through ongoing conversations, workshops, and publications.

June 15, 6-8pm: Critical Show & Tell

Neta Bomani facilitates a conversation with Joan Zahra Dark and Jay G. of the Bluestockings Collective, in which collective members are invited to pull materials from Interference Archive’s zine collection to “show-and-tell”.

June 24, 6-8pm: Community Zine Jam

Four zine makers will create a publication live at Interference Archive and will be broadcast to the public via Instagram live stream. Aliyah Blackmore, Kameelah Rasheed, Kathryn-kay Johnson will work at creator stations while Neta Bomani prints the Risograph edition. The audience is invited to purchase advance copies of the edition, which will be bound and signed by the artists. 

After Sass 2022 is hosted by Booklyn in cooperation with Interference Archive and curated by Neta Bomani. Illustrations by Sarula Bao. For more information please email [email protected].

This program is made possible in part by funds from the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs, in partnership with the NY City Council.

Booklyn’s programs made possible by the New York State Council on the Arts with the support of the Office of the Governor and the New York State Legislature.