Momma Tried is a conceptual print publication examining 20th Century media's decline in the 21st Century.
Since Issue 2, Momma has become sentient and is now aware of her own mortality as a print object. In an effort to resist obsolescence and death, she's attempting to turn herself into a cyborg.
As we consider how our content reflects her state of awareness and identity, this transition is taking shape through themes of futurism, the uncanny, existential horror, and internet aesthetics, as well as an embedded Augmented Reality layer visible only through a smartphone application, which will be free to download for both iOS and Android.
We’re so excited for you to join us for this new phase of the project, and can’t wait for you to interact with our cyborgian magazine!
About augmented reality
To convey the sentience of the magazine, we are introducing a new layer to the project: augmented reality technology.
AR content is essentially digital information collaged onto the “real world” via your smartphone’s camera. By opening the app and looking at the magazine through your smartphone’s display, the printed page will appear to animate, images that once were frozen in place will move about the page, and texts will rearrange to reveal hidden messages from within Momma’s neural network. Thanks to the impressive programming skills of our app developers at Code on Canvas -- who have developed similar technologies for Brian Eno, Flume, Will.i.am, and the Museum of Contemporary Art, Australia -- no QR codes, or other such distracting markers, are needed.
Concept and inspirations
The layout, design and the Disruptive Content “ads” in Momma Tried reference the aesthetic style of 1960’s - 1970’s Playboy magazine, visually anchoring Momma in the recent past. Through the five issue arc of the magazine we are examining the current trajectory of humanity towards cyborgian identity, artificial intelligence, how ideas can be suggested into existence, and the present mortality of 20th Century perspectives. In Issues 1 and 2 we explored notions of authenticity and reality in media. As the project transitions towards issues 3, 4, and 5, we are increasingly inspired by Internet Theory, historical and contemporary examples of media in transition, technological convergence, artificial intelligence, and the singularity.
About Momma Tried
Momma Tried magazine is only available in print. At its core, our aim has been to construct an artist’s periodical that presents an anachronistic dynamic between the object and the reader. We’re inspired by printed magazines when print was in its prime, while addressing the flaws of misogyny, materialism, and political manipulation that were/are the hallmarks of this type of media. We have created Momma Tried as a portable installation piece in the form of a print publication, asking: “Is a concept equitable to an object?” “How much is needed to make something real?” and “How much of reality is what we believe?”
What your contribution will support
Every issue of Momma Tried consists of visual art, three original photo editorials created in-house, artist-created fake ads, and literary pieces contributed by local and international writers. Our nude editorials explore issues of gender and identity, body politics, and pop culture, and they feature our friends and creative peers as models. In keeping with Issues 1 and 2, Issue 3 will be published in a limited edition of 1000, and it will be 160 pages long, printed in full color, and perfect bound.
Intended purpose and impact
We have been committed to providing an outlet for marginalized voices since publishing our first issue in 2013. The current political climate has only deepened our commitment to publishing work by experimental artists and writers from a wide range of perspectives and identities. By creating work that is designed to be archived, we hope to contribute to discourses about authenticity in media, reality, and identity in the near and far future. We began Momma Tried magazine as an outlet for observations about the fabrication of alternate realities through various forms of media, and we have seen this converge with our present reality as headlines about “alternative facts” and “fake news” dominate the news cycle. Witnessing this shift emphasizes for us the importance of creating art that serves as a mirror of critical thinking about media.
In addition to copies of Issue 3, here are some of the other rewards that are available:
How funds will be used
All of the funds raised will be spent printing the magazine, developing the augmented reality app, fulfilling backer rewards, and covering Kickstarter fees. Our current goal is $15,000 but our actual costs are closer to $20,000, so all additional funds received will be put directly towards our remaining printing and app development costs.
Issue 3 production schedule + reward delivery timeline
- Kickstarter end date: July 18th
- Funds transfer (up to 2 weeks): Aug 1st
- Send Issue 3 to print (printing takes up to 3 weeks): August, exact date TBD
- Develop and test the Issue 3 Augmented Reality app: August, exact date TBD
- Magazine arrival date (shipping takes up to 2 weeks): September, exact date TBD
- Kickstarter reward shipping begins: September, exact date TBD
After sending the magazine to print and deploying the finished app, our first priority will be fulfilling all of our Kickstarter rewards and making shipments to all of you, which we plan to do during the month of September.
Ways to help
If you’re able to financially contribute to this presale, that’s wonderful! Any amount will bring us closer to our goals, and we’re so grateful for your support. Whether or not you donate, please consider sharing our Kickstarter with friends, on a blog, or on social media; the more people we can reach, the better!
If you’re an artist or writer and you’d like to send us your work to be reviewed for the next issue, please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org
Last but not least: if you’re affiliated with a bookstore, shop, or art space and you’d like to stock Momma Tried, please be in touch! Email email@example.com
Micah + Theo
The marathon of work leading up to this Kickstarter was made possible with the help of some amazing friends: our beautiful video models Jade Brandt, Joe Witkowski, and Max Geller; Jonny Fritz for bringing his incredible leatherworking skills to the campaign, as well as Dr. Spacebob Weisz, Toby David, and Sonali Fernando. And, as always, an enormous debt is owed to our friend, the artist James Cabot Ewart, who has been our rock since the beginning. We are additionally excited to be receiving support from our new friends at Ello who are partnering with us during the campaign to help raise visibility for the project!
- The AR example image features a gif pulled from the Private Life video by Grace Jones
- Layout gif 1: illustration by Amaryllis DeJesus Moleski, ribbon photo by Agustin Hernandez, leopard photo by Momma Tried
- Layout gif 2: mattress photo by Agustin Hernandez, photos by Joseph Sobel, photo by Momma Tried
- Momma Tried covers gif: Issue 1 cover photographed by Alana Pryor Akerman, Issue 2 cover photographed by Joshua Smith
- All other images by Momma Tried
Risks and challenges
Issue 3 is a new challenge in many ways, but we’re excited to push ourselves beyond what we know we can do. We’ve never produced an app before and are relative newcomers to the world of augmented reality technology, but we’ve spent the last year giving ourselves a crash course on all things AR, and have found a creative coding studio to develop our app that we feel super fortunate to have the opportunity to be partnering with. While venturing into the world of cutting edge tech is definitely a risk, we know that taking the extra time to deliver something really special to all of you is worth it.
As with any art project that has lots of moving parts, staying on schedule is at times a challenge. During the month of this campaign we’re going to be putting all of our content into layout, designing the disruptive content, as well as beginning the designs for our augmented reality animations. We’re so excited to see everything come together, and we will be keeping in contact will all of you through campaign updates, our regular newsletter, and social media posts so that we can keep the conversation going as we wrap up Issue 3!
We are so grateful to our supporters for making the last two issues of Momma Tried possible via our previous Kickstarter campaigns, and for sticking with us as we’re nearing the printing of our third issue. You all have been so amazingly encouraging, and although there have been personal sacrifices over the past year of working on this issue, we’re so excited that we have the opportunity to be creating art that we love this much. The support from friends, family, and strangers that have contributed to making Momma Tried successful thus far has helped us manage some of the personal risks and challenges that so many artists face, and we feel really lucky that we have the help of so many people to pursue our creative inspirations.
- (30 days)