Informality is an arts and culture publication Started in May of 2013 under the premise of documenting the conversation about visual art in Kansas City. Over the last few years, the publication has taken new shapes through public programs, workshops, video podcasts, and new forms of local arts coverage. The main focus of Informality has remained constant: Documenting the conversation about contemporary art and culture and their changing contexts in Kansas City. The function is artist-focused as a catalyst encouraging contributions from a wide range of perspectives in the community. Remaining informal and informative, our goal is to be radically critical through what we publish and the programming we create.
CRIT 2 CRIT is an open ended discussion-based workshop that centers around the idea of artists functioning a dual-role as critics in their community. CRIT 2 CRIT helps artists translate the dialog of critique into art criticism. With the necessity of project bookends such as studio visits, critiques, and exhibitions, artists should realize the power of their capacity to share that knowledge/vocabulary through arts-related writing.
CRIT 2 CRIT focuses on these four main reasons given by artists for not becoming critics -
There are plenty of writers to do it for me already. So what is the job of “The Critic”?
The language of art writing - relating to class/privilege and obscuring the truth.
Will my subjective opinion of an artist’s work create a ripple of offence in a small community?
Writing about art will have no impact on my practice.
Guerrilla Docents is a community-centric, performative project in the Crossroads Arts District with Melaney Mitchell and Blair Schulman acting as pop-up docents for various First Friday Exhibitions. Often times, people end up following a conveyor belt through the galleries. Not stopping to look or think about what they are seeing. Our goal was to change this, we simply ask this crowd if they want to “go on an art tour.” We get groups of people, who will follow us into the gallery. We look at the work as a group, first silently, then we ask them to tell us what they believe the work is about, then we flip it. From this reversal, we ask them questions. ‘What do you see?’‘What more can you find?’ ‘How is this affecting you?’ It’s a simple strategy that engages an audience that desires a discussion and our program facilitates one. The takeaway being visitors have been included in the art conversation and become further invested in the city’s culture. This work is for them as much as it is for the arts community.
You can read more about this project on our blog here!
PDF CLUB is a reading and conversation group studying theory in relation to our work, our community, and our culture as a whole.
We invite our editorial team, local artists, and community cultural workers to select readings and participate in discussions.
In the past we have read and discussed articles by Brad Troemel, Ben Davis, Donna Haraway, McKenzie Wark, Jeffrey Sconce, Lee Mackinnon, Hannah Black, Hito Steyerl, and Coco Fusco.
Roof Chill is a video podcast on YouTube showcasing interviews and short reviews with artists in the local Kansas City area.