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Rocket to Variant: artists' writing in Scotland 19631984

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The antagonistic and oppositional mode of publications of the 1960s, such as Rocket, and later manifestations of this voice of dissent and discontent in the pages of magazines like Stigma are almost indistinguishable in certain texts. Stigma was the direct precursor for Scotland's most long-standing visual art publication, Variant, established by students at the Glasgow School of Art in 1984. Examining some of the writings of artists who contributed to these publications is a way of identifying the ways in which art theory and criticism in Scotland both reflected and responded to broader Anglophone critical shifts. It is also a means of understanding the crucial generative nature of art writing in establishing an internationally renowned ecology of artistic practice in Scotland.

Keywords: anti-establishment; art writing; criticism; self-publishing; zine

Document Type: Research Article


Affiliations: Edinburgh College of Art.

Publication date: 2009-12-01

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  • The Journal of Writing in Creative Practice is the official organ of the Writing Purposefully in Art and Design (Writing PAD) network. It offers art and design institutions an arena in which to explore and develop the notion of thinking through writing as a parallel to visual discourse in art and design practice. The journal aims to extend the debates to all national and international higher educational art and design institutions.
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