The bad news: the tactile version of Amelia’s Magazine is no longer available. The good news: it has been restructured as a blog, and an illustration anthology is in the works. The brainchild of, yes, a woman named Amelia, it survived in its original form for 5 years. There were 10 amazing issues. Though we must now content ourselves with the on-line incarnation, it is more a sacrifice of spirit than content. This is , for me, the hidden thorn.
This luxurious, artistic gem of a magazine was founded on true small-press principles, with passionate intent to be old-school three-dimensional. In other words, paper. It featured art, fashion, the environment , photography, and music (the first issue had an interview with pre-train wreck Pete Dougherty). There was something to satisfy every art-conscious person, and it was beautifully presented. I realize that the founder’s ideals have not altered. Amelia herself, on the blog, refers to is as “creativity in the climate of change”: that is a heart-rending encapsulation of the world that artists ,and all of us, currently face.
It is true that Amelia’s Magazine was home-grown but it was a glossy, potent and professional product. She invested real money into the endeavour and, where there is money to be gained, there is also money to be lost. In this sense, it was not really a kitchen-table affair (KTA) but the relatively expensive, sophisticated product of an artist with access to real resources, something that most of us lack. This at once elevated the publication into the realm of the big boys. An indie magazine playing on a real stage. This is impressive and is, perhaps, at the heart of what every creative renegade hopes to achieve: Independence, readership and respect. Another lesson to be learned here is how building a network of like-minded artists can pay off for all involved.
The blog is not to be trifled with or dismissed: it retains much of what made the hard copy so invigoratingly delicious. There is a core of savvy contributors, beautiful or eye-opening pieces (reviews, interviews) and an atmosphere electric with creativity and respect for all of the kaleidoscopic artistry to be found in our sometimes frustrating, ever-altering modern world. Amelia’s Magazine’s passionate, particularly English approach to the arts is still here, just in a different form. Knowing where the blog sprang from can give the briefest pause, as you stop to mourn ,with genuine grief, the old-school ideals that first gave it life. Meeting the demands of the economic and artistic moment means tangling with compromise. The end result is , perhaps, not all that one would hope for: yet, the willingness of Amelia and her staff to engage in some shape-shifting has ensured that it will remain with us for some time to come.
I am having some problems with linking things. Actually, the links work properly but, even though it is set up correctly, it is not highlighting the links. So, to go directly to the site, simply click on the first place that it says “Amelia’s Magazine” at the top of the page. Thanks!