While BlackBookers feted their Music Issue, several blocks uptown Useless Magazine and Brooklyn rockers Golden Triangle celebrated the debut of their sixth issue. The independent, artist-run art and culture magazine has developed a versatile, enthusiastic following among the art crowd since its creation in 2004.
“Everyday I get emails from all over the world from designers, stylists, illustrators, photographers wanting to be involved,” says fashion director Sarah Maher. “Designers I love and respect are really excited about working with us. [They] know of us already, which gives me great hope for the future of an industry that is currently so economy-based.”
Over 400 well-wishers crammed into artsy Chelsea hotspot Passerby (which owner Gavin Brown says he will soon close). Meanwhile, staffers struggled to figure out how many of them were on the 200-person guest list.
“The people here tonight respect something that’s a little pulpy, a little dirty,” says Joshua Seidner, Useless features editor. “What’s most exciting is that people still care about stuff that’s actually on newsprint.”
Published three times a year and sold at alternative bookstores and high-end boutiques around the world, the magazine strikes an irreverent tone with a range of multicultural content. Half of its essays, interviews, illustrations and photographs are generated in its London office.
“The goal is to have things, designers, people, ideals that all blend as part of the Useless theme, family and philosophy,” Maher says. “It’s based in art, of artists and their creations. [We want our content to be] interesting, aesthetically challenging or beautiful in design and designers ideals.”
While staff members coyly declined to discuss the specifics of the next issue (out in March of 2008), Seidner listed Jonas Mekas, Robert Wilson, Helmut Berger, Sam Shepard and Kenneth Anger as candidates for piece on New York’s male legends.
“They’re each heavyweights, each important, each artists, each useless,” he said. “I can’t say what exactly will be in our future issues. Who knows? It will be whatever we’re most excited about the month before it comes out.”
If Gawker found the party itself to be useless, Maher hopes readers know the magazine is anything but.
“New York has been simmering for quite a while now,” she says. “Artists are nearly being crushed by the big fat asses in accounting controlling the arts industry. I think there is going to be a turning point very soon and I can’t wait for it! The kids are going to riot, tear it apart and give a big kick to abovementioned fat asses. I love the idea of bringing everyone together in the issue, it brings me hope.”
Photos by Mike Garten.