Rules, Tools, and Fools
Artists respond to the Whole Earth Catalog with various media and teach-ins.
Spudnik Press Cooperative presents “Rules, Tools, and Fools,” featuring Chicago-based artists ACT Collective, Alberto Aguilar, Jesse Malmed, Jaclyn Jacunski, Jason Pallas, Ryan Thompson, Hui-min Tsen, and national artists Sarah Hotchkiss (San Francisco), Jen Smoose (Seattle), and Leah Wolff (New York). This exhibition will feature the artists’ various responses to a key piece of printmedia – the Whole Earth Catalog.
Whole Earth Catalog is a counter-cultural touchstone that presaged many of today’s artistic and social modes of engagement. Rules, Tools, and Fools serves as a vehicle for artists to be provoked by and respond to the Whole Earth Catalog using a range of materials and conceptual strategies. The exhibiting artists all have a relationship with at least one of the themes explicitly embedded within the Catalog–alternative education, off-the-grid living, self-sufficiency, do-it-yourself culture, ecology, utopian ideals, communal action, holism, and access to tools. All of the artists are crafting new responses and activities to the Catalog for the exhibition.
The show is presented in The Annex, an educational and exhibition space within the non-profit printmaking studio, Spudnik Press Cooperative. The show is not only a response to all that the Whole Earth Catalog embodies, but is a visual manifestation of the role that Spudnik Press plays in the Chicago ecosystem.
The organization of Rules, Tools, and Fools mimics the strategies that drive Spudnik Press as a collectively managed and cooperatively run printshop. The progressive ethics used to bring the artists together and create programming mirror the spirit of the Whole Earth Catalog. This equitable effort puts trust in artists’ voices to shape how the show manifests. Rather than a nostalgic revisiting of a bygone era, the show offers poetic and practical solutions from our contemporary relationship to the Whole Earth’s problems.
Stay hungry, stay foolish.