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TesserActual ArteFactory

Ottawa, ON

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How did you start?

by accidental necessity

Who are your influences, in Canada and beyond?

so far in this particular imprint’s instance, Barbara Caruso, P.Cob, bpNichol

What is your mission?

no mission but i get the impression that any publications released through this imprint will be items that somehow abstract from/condense a far greater/wider reality than their cultural artefactuality might immediately suggest (“artistbook”s?); multimedial

What about small press publishing is particularly exciting to you right now?

the same thing as always: the lack of imposed restrictions that allows for more fully explorational publishing procedures

How does your press work to engage with your immediate literary community, and community at large?

it does not work specifically to engage itself with any literary or other community, though its presence was most certainly engaged with BY people from varying communities (literary, visual art, graffiti, photography, riverpeople), many of whom participated in the construction of the gallery (& its environs) & have attended various events held there. a look through the comments in the guestbook certainly demonstrates community appreciation (comprising invited guests & random riverfolk who stop by in surprise).
as well, the first publication most certainly engages with Barbara Caruso & bpNichol’s silkscreen portfolio FROM MY WINDOW (not quite describable as a “literary” work) & Barbara’s work as publisher/designer/printer/etcet of Seripress

Tell us about three of your publications. What makes them special, needed, and/or unique?

1. jwcurry’s MORF MY WINDOW is a sequence of 4 silhouette images derived from photographs shot during the construction of the 1st TesserActual ArteFact Gallery (which burned down just as it was finishing construction). the photographs were slightly enlarged, cropped to uniformity, then cut as stencils in cardboard as reverse images (so that the background would print, not the image) then printed with spraypaint in colours that suggested the various backgrounds (trees, sky, ground). the final image is derived from a photograph of a proof of the first image mounted in the new/replacement TesserActual ArteFactory [these 2 images are both visible in the “onsite MORF MY WINDOW display” photo noted above]. each copy is quite unique in its colouration & halation (each print having been made in white before overlaying further colours) &, despite the “primitive” nature of the medium, the spraybombed stencilprints actually achieve a form of “photographic likeness” without the need for bridges of any other technical “cheats”. though the prints were not made onsite but back on land at A Onion Prtintshop, the proofs are all on wood & mounted in the gallery they document the construction of: it seemed to make sense to issue the work under the imprint of the gallery.

2. not a “publication” BUT the TesserActual ArteFactory itself houses & displays a significant collection of canadian art in which can be found work by Carlyle Baker, Bill Bissett, Daniel Bradley, Hart Broudy, Michael Casteels, P.Cob, Judith Copithorne, jwcurry, Travis Doubt, Clint Eagleson, Peter Fritz, Eric Grice, Nathalie Grice, Haunty Homsick, Wharton Hood, Rachel Lindsey, Mlina Lore, Sheena Mordasiewicz, Kathleen Muise, bpNichol, Gary Lee Nova, Rob Ouellette, Jessica Pieterse, Kelsea Shore, Elise Skinner, Chris Turnbull, Ben Walker, Sophia Lindsey Walker, & Ben Watson. among its collectings, it also houses the

3. Arbitrary Islands Island Archive of primarily donated &or scavenged copies of books with the word “island” (or its variants) in the title & selected relevant randomage.

How have the current multiple global crises impacted your work with the press?

it hasn’t.

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