By our calculations, The Thing Quarterly launched a full four years ago, with a hand-wringing window shade bearing silkscreened text by Miranda July. Each issue of The Thing, conceived as an object-based periodical, is the brainchild (or red-headed stepchild, depending on your aesthetic inclinations) of a different invited artist, writer, musician, or filmmaker, including the likes of Trisha Donnelly, Jonathan Lethem, Doo.Ri, and James Franco. Charged with the task of marrying a useful object with text, contributors have created, among other things, a bamboo cutting board with text seared into its surface (“Crying Instructions” by Starlee Kline), and a hefty rubber doorstop bearing a letter to Billie Jean King written by the artist’s much younger self (untitled, by Anne Walsh). The editors, Jonn Herschend and Will Rogan, are visual artists themselves, and the most interesting of the things they have produced walk an elegant or provocative line between literature, fine art, and functional object.
Perhaps you knew all this already, and have been sitting on the subscription fence, waiting for a proverbial dream team to be announced for an upcoming issue cycle. Well, wait no more, as this year’s issues will spring from the minds of four perennially interesting individuals, Dave Eggers, Shannon Ebner, Mike Mills, and David Shrigley, all of whom have built their creative practices at the complex interface between visual/verbal worlds. The excellent issue #16 by Dave Eggers has already been released (pictured above); it features a PVC-free shower curtain with so much to say. Below, examples of work by the other three artists rounding out the 2012 Quarterly; we’re sure it will be an interesting surprise to see what each comes up with.
More about The Thing Quarterly on their website
More on Dave Eggers at the McSweeney’s website
More on Shannon Ebner at Wallspace Gallery
Mike Mills’ website
David Shrigley’s website
images, from top to bottom:
Dave Eggers, Issue #16 of The Thing Quarterly
Shannon Ebner, Is Dead, ink jet prints, wheatpaste, gesso, plywood panels, 8 x 16 feet, 2006. Installation view, “Trace,” at The Whitney Museum at Altria, New York
Mike Mills, Undftd billboards, Los Angeles, 2007
David Shrigley, Ignore This Building, 1996, 400x300mm, ed. 12