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Student-run art magazine relaunched after three years of silence

AF·ART will aim to explore art history repeating itself

The University of Copenhagen (UCPH) has a new magazine for those interested in art and images, run entirely by students. It was relaunched last Friday at Klosteret (‘The Convent’).

AF·ART (Danish: subspecies, variation of), founded in 2002, closed down when the last editor left the university. Now it has been revived: a group of students from the Art History and Visual Culture courses have spent the last six months planning, fundraising, writing and editing the first issue of AF·ART to be released in three years.

People at the launch party enjoying an art piece ‘Moments’ by Rune Bosse. Photo: Ida Lehrmann Madsen

Picking up where it was left

When the old AF·ART closed down, a few master’s students took the initiative to get it up and running again. After starting as a guide at The David Collection, and seeing the effect of communicating art, one of the current editors Ida Højgaard Thjømøe met former editor at AF·ART, Denis Rivin.

”We spoke about how art can be put in writing and agreed to relaunch AF·ART. Then I asked Emma [another editor at AF·ART – ed.] if it was possible and she said definitely,” Ida says.

”Then we had a meeting, and the boys were keen, and now here we are,” adds Emma Malene Rix Tversted.

Different in style, but not in spirit

Calling last Friday a relaunch doesn’t seem completely adequate, because the magazine is actually different in style, but not in spirit, to the old AF·ART; a conscious decision by the editorial team.

”When Rune Gade founded it back in the day, it was a magazine that addressed primarily lecturers and students, and we decided it should be more accessible to anyone who is generally interested in art or culture,” says Ida.

”We’ve tried to do what he intended. We’re based in the university world but we extend it,” says Emma. ”We take in anyone who wants to join us. For the next issue we have people who are outside the academic world, we have people from the Academies of Fine Art too, as well as law students writing articles, so it’s more mixed,” adds Ida.

Relevant to everyone

AF·ART’s broad scope of subjects and writers is what sets them apart from many other current art magazines. Another factor is their aim to be topical but not in a way that’s news based. The theme of the first issue is, fittingly, Absence Makes The Heart Grow Fonder, a theme most people can relate to regardless of their background.

Currently all articles, except one in French, are in Danish, but Ida and Emma believe that the magazine is also relevant to international students: ”It’s relevant to everyone!” Ida explains: ”Everyone who is somewhat interested in art has to find something interesting in the magazine. Otherwise it’s not good enough.”

In the meantime, anyone who doesn’t speak Danish but wants to read the magazine will be able to access a PDF of the first issue (not available yet), that can then be read using an online translation service, as soon as the second issue is out in print. ”We haven’t received any articles in English yet, but we’re very open to it,” says Ida.

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