New York. Los Angeles. San Francisco. Austin. Now, Miami. All these cities have one thing in common: zine fairs. In just a few short years, the Miami Zine Fair has grown exponentially. Switching hands in true Miami form, it began as another event in the already brimming O,Miami Poetry Festival calendar. Under different leadership, the fair returned two years later by popular demand. #Fordistas jumped in at the last minute, but aren’t we always running on Cuban time? Regardless, the annual Zine Fair allows Miami to shine a light on Miami’s homegrown talent.
The Miami Zine Fair is now in the hands of Exile Books, a pop-up artist’s bookstore. Their very mode of operation makes them the perfect foremen of the fair. The projection this year was 140 stalls, with over 2,000 attendees. The numbers aren’t out, but by our estimation, that was a low-ball figure.
Many organizations within the established arts community manned their own tables. O,Miami for example, is always present, and indeed still includes the fair within their month-long poetic celebration. This year, #Fordistas were the new kids on the block, working with a pretty steep learning curve. But we ventured fearlessly into zine territory.
The Display Rack
Graciously made with the immediacy of Paul Revere, the woodworker Nima (@nimamade) received the specifications for the display a few days prior to the event. The rise in participation for the zine fair allotted a modest 3X3 foot space for table and chairs. No complaints, the solution was clear: build up. This was the result.
Fair Trades, No Cash
Curating what would ultimately be on display was no easy feat. The canon of #Fordistas past was reopened. Our challenge was to pick and choose a cohesive arrangement across all mediums, with all of the local collaborating artists.
All items were welcomed for trading… but not really. As an experiment, all art works and apparel were given away for free! Attendees became #Fordistas subscribers and walked away with a token piece from a past #Fordistas collaboration. A symbiotic circle was born: #Fordistas commissions the artist, then gives the work to the public in exchange for their loyalty to the #Fordistas program.
The Miami Zine Fair was more popular than it has ever been before. With mini-iterations of the same concept popping up around Miami throughout the year, we can say with confidence that the 305 has arrived to the party, and that #Fordistas are at the crest of that wave.
Would you like to be part of the #Fordistas crew? Sign up and stay informed on our upcoming pop-ups & cultural events.
WORDS BY: Lauren Ruiz