Big Fag Press


Archived entries for General

The Centre For Deep Reading at Big Fag Press

This March the Press printed a job with and hosted an event for the Centre For Deep Reading. The Centre is an organisation initiated by Nick Keys & Ella Skilbeck-Porter dedicated to deepening the reading practices of contemporary writers and readers in general.

The Print Job – Patron Saint Cards & Bookmarks

Illustrations and calligrams by David Sater, and designed by BFP veteran and certified digital guru Patrick Armstrong, the CDR print job produced the first two in a series of Patron Saint cards as well as event-specific bookmarks.

Lispectors Livestream – 13 piece improvised poetry reading (one night only)

On March 25th, The Press opened its doors to CDR for Lispectors, a group reading event dedicated to the work of the Brazilian writer Clarice Lispector. In the above photo, Lispectors rehearse at the press before the reading.

Lispectors then moved a few archways down to the band room where they encircled Emma Ramsay’s binaural microphone. Livestreamed as part of Source Material, the Lispectors broadcast was a one-hour improvised group poetry reading with 13 voices in 3 different languages. The 13 readers worked thematically through material from all of Clarice Lispector’s body of work, including commentary by Helene Cixous. The raw audio file can be heard here and an edited and produced version will soon be forthcoming.

LISPECTORS: Clockwise from Stephanie King (bottom, in red): Susannah Jack, Holly Isemonger, Emily Stewart, Gabriela Soares, Lili Munhoz, Gabi Brasil (absent here but would arrive soon), Nick Keys, Emma Rayward, Ella Skilbeck-Porter, Aurora Scott, & Justin Wolfers.

Learn to make cold pressed soap infused with wild plants

MAKING SOAP WITH WILD PLANTS- May 20-21

Learn how to make cold processed soap infused with the plants growing in your garden

Soap making is an age-old skill that anyone can learn. Join wild plants expert Diego Bonetto and soap-maker extraordinaire Lisa Norris for two days on an empowering experience: learn how to safely recognise common medicinal plants growing in your garden and use them in soap!

Diego is an edible weeds advocate renown for his offering of urban foraging workshops. Building on the knowledge acquired while growing up on a farm in Italy, Diego introduce people to the ever-present food and medicine plants that surround us. He collaborates extensively with chefs, herbalists, environmentalists and cultural workers promoting new understanding of what the environment has to offer.

Lisa has been making soap for over 7 years and since 2012 is presenting her creations as Kangaroo Apple Studio. Her love for natural products have pushed her to experiment while thoroughly enjoying the process. She has a wealth of information and is a great teacher. Kangaroo Apple Soap Studio has won a number of international soap challenges and was recently awarded first prize in the Collaboration Challenge of the international Soap Challenge Club.

WHAT WE WILL DO

Day one Saturday 20 May 9:30am-2pm

During the first day you will learn how a cold process batch of soap is made, using natural vegetable oils and prepared plant infused oils. You will then participate in making soap under supervision. You will do this in groups of three, so that everyone will have an hands-on experience of the process. We will have a lunch break and plenty of time to answer all of your questions. We will then put the soap to bed and leave it to saponify overnight.

Day two Sunday 21 May 10am-2pm

We will start the day with a walk when we will discover and learn how to positively identify the most common medicinal plants living in anyone’s garden. We will learn about dandelion, chickweed, plantain, dock, castor oil plant and more. We will then show you how to infuse them into oils for use in a new batch of soap.
After a lunch break we will unmould our soap made the previous day, cut the bars and share the results.

WHAT YOU WILL LEARN

– how to safely handle ingredients including lye (sodium hydroxide)
– what equipment is needed
– what can be used as moulds
– about some oils commonly used in soap making and their properties
– how to use a lye calculator to formulate your own soap recipes

This workshop will empower you with the confidence to make more soap at home, experimenting with different ingredients, fragrances, exfoliants and colours. Soap making can be very addictive, with endless possibilities for creativity!

THE COSTS: $160 for two days of five hours each of information packed workshop with notes and soap bars that you make to take home. We will provide coffee and tea facilities but please bring your own lunch. There is also a discount for pensioner and underemployed and a two-for-one ticket so that you can come along with your friend in soap!

Book your ticket here> 
Small class of only 15, will sell fast 🙂

Big Fag Press – 2016 in retrospect

January – Grill’d community award for Big Fag Press.

March – Carbon Laboratory artist group hosts meetings at Big Fag Press in planning for forthcoming exhibition.

March – Black Boots Indonesian Artist/Music collective – residency at Big Fag Press, in association with Ali Crosby from UTS Design, and FrontYard (Marrickville)

April – Big Fag Press key member John Demos dies of lung cancer.

April – Lucas Ihlein speaks in Melbourne on socially engaged art and ethics – VCA, Melbourne University

April – Diego Bonetto – key artist on Food Fight in collaboration with C3West, Liverpool Council. Nominated for FBi SMAC awards 2016

April-May SquatSpace Redfern Waterloo Tour of Beauty – Big Fag Press co-ordinates community bus through City of Sydney scheme, in association with Keg de Souza’s installation at Sydney Biennale.

April-May – Louise Anderson – exhibitor in Future Feminist Archive at Cross Arts Projects, Kings Cross.

May-November – establish John Demos legacy project in collaboration with John’s family members, friends and professional associates.

May – Louise Anderson – secures funding for Big Fag Press accessible artists’ residency project through Australia Council for the Arts

May – Kenzie Patterson – prints at Big Fag Press, solo exhibition at Darren Knight Gallery, Sydney.

May – Sydney College of the Arts – student visits from 3 groups (50 visitors)

June-October – Audrey Qin, artist from China, interns at Big Fag Press, works on the John Demos Legacy project.

June – Lucas Ihlein – artist in residence in Guangzhou China for Sydney-Guangzhou Sister Cities Celebration, produces silkscreen print suite in collaboration with Chinese Artists, exhibition in Guangzhou, and at 4A Centre for Contemporary Asian Art in Sydney.

July – AGM for Big Fag Press

August – Lucas Ihlein participates in roundtable Art, Science, Oceans at Sydney University

August-October – Lucas Ihlein commences project Sugar vs the Reef with farmers in Queensland, funded by Australia Council for the Arts and Australian Research Council.

September – Jubilee Kitchen Garden launches – community garden project in collaboration with PUG Mens Shed, Jubilee Park – supported by grant from City of Sydney Community Gardens Matching Grant Scheme.

Oct-November – Giorgia Severi, artist from Italy, 4 week residency at Big Fag Press, public workshops. Collaborative exhibition with Diego Bonetto at Italian Institute of Culture, and solo exhibition at M Contemporary Art Gallery.

November – Laura Fisher speaks about Diego Bonetto’s work at Global Ecologies – Local Impact conference at Sydney University.

Big Fag xMas SALE!

Pat Grant, Nerd with Table, 2013. Two colours printed on 200gsm boxboard. Offset lithographic print, limited edition of 29. 20x30cm.

Pat Grant, Nerd with Table, 2013. Two colours printed on 200gsm boxboard. Offset lithographic print, limited edition of 29. 20x30cm.

Indeed, is coming up to the silly season, and if you’d like to get something special to one of your loved ones (so special, is limited edition!) come to check out our exhibition of prints.

We’re opening the door from this coming Thursday offering a selection of special prints at discounted prices AND with free postage AND special packaging.

 

Come to have a look or follow the sale online via this facebook event>>
https://www.facebook.com/events/1065959286768059/

Yay!
Open Tuesdays and Thursdays, 10 to 4, all the way to xMAs!>>

 

Big Fag at Bundanon

The Big Fag crew is a bunch of busy buddies, lost in their lives, work, practice and preoccupation. We seldom get together under the same roof for longer than a print run. Thankfully there is places that offer artist’s retreats, like Bundanon Trust, a couple of hours south of Sydney, where artists and artist collectives can take refuge from their busy lives and concentrate on one task only: catch up!

wayzgoose

In the industry when a bunch of printmakers get together for a catch up, a print, and a feast is called a Wayzgoose, and that’s what we did. We printed, cooked for each others, went through an alarming amount of discussions and paperwork and over all enjoyed the beautiful settings>>

Continue reading…

Mapping Workshop – ideas

Some Mapping ideas

Maps are used for:

Way finding

To make visible something previously not visible

To show relationships between things
– spatial
– causal
– ideological
– fanciful
– geological and social etc

To dominate ( European maps of new world)

To demonstrate ownership (cadastral maps)

To persuade or control ( map showing what school you are allowed to send your kids to, depending where you live)

To market or promote. ( example of North Carolina from Denis woods)

The making of a map can be a form of knowledge production ( ie it doesn’t just show something already known , rather it brings a new piece of knowledge into the world )

Continue reading…

Where are we now? And how do I get there?

big fag press - new location

In preparation for our Big Fag “O” Day this weekend, we’ve prepared a map and guide to how to arrive at our new home in a timely fashion! Click on the image above for a larger size.

New workshop available>> Share a PL8 :)

Pilot Programme $250 – Saturdays, 14 and 28 June

Have you ever wanted to print your own limited edition artist work but couldn’t afford it?

The Big Fag Press are launching a new workshop series, and in exchange for your feedback, we’re offering an exclusive start-up offer for 8 people.

The Big Fag are a group of artists who run a 4 tonne FAG-104 proofing press which is no longer commericially viable. It is however, a real boon for print-makers, artists and activists who want to print a short series of special works. Unfortunately printing on our beloved fag press can be rather pricey, which is why we’ve devised a system where 8 people get to share a lithographic printing plate (hence the “Share a PL8″) over a 2 day workshop, 2 weeks apart to create a one-colour A4 sized limited edition print.

 

Lucas Ihlein, inking the press

Lucas Ihlein, inking the press

Continue reading…

Big Fag Newsletter out now!

big fag newsletter

Our wonderful new intern Tim has spurred us to publish something we’ve been meaning to do for AGES – something which in the not-too-distant future will probably seem very old-fashioned – an “e-newsletter”…

These custom designed HTML email thingummies seem to be all the rage at the moment (notwithstanding that they may in fact be kinda evil or at the very least misguided. More discussion here).

Anyway, we’ve had lots of folks signing up to our “hear from us” page, so we figured that it was high-time we tried a bit harder to keep you informed as to our Big Fag Goings-On…

So without further ado, you can read our first newsletter, here.

Louise’s “Intern Report”

Louise Anderson has been our official “intern” at Big Fag for over a year now, and we can’t imagine life without her. In this blog post, Louise reflects on her experience of working with us.

An Unlikely “Internship”, by Louise Anderson

Now, it’s not many people who can say they know how to and have helped change the blanket on a 4 tonne printing machine (that’s the weight of 8 cars). Actually, a year ago, I thought a blanket was just the rug I use on my bed. But now I know, large offset printing machines use rubber blankets to transport ink from rollers to paper. How did I come by this information? It’s an interesting story.

A while ago in my Fashion Design degree I decided I wanted to take a more artistic route and major in the visual communication/ printwork side of things, and I was told I needed to do an internship. The desire to be part of the artworld always having been somewhere there in my subconscious I seized the opportunity when Lucas Ihlein by chance gave a lecture in a class I was taking, told him I was inspired by his presentation and would he mind if a wannabe artist hung around him for a while. At this point I had no idea he was part of a collective at the Big Fag Press, and that suddenly my degree and my artist dreams would veer down the same path.

Being an “intern” (yes I still do the “_” hand movements when I say this outloud) with a group of artists is very different to what I’ve experienced in the world of fashion where I remember steaming dresses all day long. I could have been the coffee kart chick at a larger magazine company that couldn’t afford to let an amateur like me do any actual work, instead I’ve been welcomed into a small business almost at the point where it’s just got off the ground, making artist contact one after the other and being allowed and thanked to be an integral part of every process from admin, to running the machine, to event organisation and documentation and digital design work. I even got to use my patternmaking and sewing skills to make a cover to fit the press!

I’ve met and worked with artists Michael Stevenson, Jason Wing, Kate Sweetapple, Keg de Souza, Ian Milliss, Fiona McDonald, and many more, not to mention collaborating with Artspace, the MCA, Fremantle Arts Centre, The CrossArt Projects, Firstdraft Gallery and Performance Space, The Paper Mill and of course Mickie Quick, Diego Bonetto and Pat Armstrong. Lucas even paid for a workshop I attended at the Rizzeria. Our big project last year Green Bans Art Walks saw me designing the project logo and T-shirt, and one of my photographs of the event ended up by chance in the City News newspaper which subsequently got me a few freelance photography jobs.

I’m on the brink of being able to run the Big Fag Press by myself (apart from perhaps the weight of some of the parts!), and I’ve learnt so much, as well as being able to consolidate skills I already had in photography and digital design. The opportunities I’ve encountered, not to mention the mentoring, inspiration and (dare I say) friendships I’ve made have been invaluable to me. I’m currently simultaneously doing a few of my own prints on the press, and beginning my final year and major work for my degree, altogether happy to have ended up at this point, in a place I feel I’ve helped, and has helped me.



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