2012 comes to a close, and with it, our fourth year of MAS Context. It was a year full of new issue releases, events, a new look and a new structure. Here is a small recap of what took place over the last 12 months:
– We released four new issues discussing Ownership, Communication, Visibility and Production. They featured new content by emerging and established designers in the form of essays, diagrams, photo essays, projects, questionnaires, films… For our recently released winter issue, Production, we collaborated with The Post Family, a Chicago-based collective, shining light onto several companies we love, with a specific emphasis on those operating in Chicago.
– Our cover designer for Aberration, architect Luis Urculo, lectured in Chicago in January and it was presented in collaboration with the Graham Foundation for Advanced Studies in the Fine Arts. A few months later, as part of the release of the Ownership issue, MAS Context and Studio Gang Architects organized an evening event in their office to discuss the larger implication of the topic on our built environment.
– In October we organized the second MAS Context : Analog event in Chicago, our one-day event of presentations, exhibitions and an onsite bookstore. This year it was hosted at NEW PROJECTS and it included the fantastic exhibition “Architectural Narratives” featuring the work of Klaus and Jimenez Lai, a bookstore by Temporary Services and twelve presentations centered around the topics of Practice, Visual Communication, Production and Curation.
– Along with JNL Graphic Design and Corkins Lodge, we organized MAS Context : Analog | Corkins Lodge, a gathering to facilitate intellectual exchange between emerging and established practitioners in order to explore and reflect on like-minded concerns. The group of designers, architects, builders, photographers, graphic designers, industrial designers, business advisors, naturalists, and entrepreneurs enjoyed a fantastic few days of conversations in an incredible setting.
– We discussed the main ideas that drive MAS Context in Archizines Live at Storefront for Art and Architecture in New York, we were invited to participate in the Istanbul Design Biennial and Magazine Library 10 in Tokyo, we wrote about our evolution in an article for Polis and we were interviewed for an article in Design Bureau. It was great to share our goals and work with new audiences.
– We teamed up with Plural to redesign our website, PDF and printed copies. The changes were implemented for the release of our Communication issue and we are thrilled with the result. We hope you also like the visual and navigational changes. As we move into 2013, we’ll continue to rethink these aspects to evolve and improve what we communicate and how we communicate it.
– During the summer, and after a long process, we became a 501 (c)(3) not-for-profit (which is almost a must in order to apply for grants or other financial support in the US) and we formed a board of advisors that includes Ethel Baraona Pohl, Alberto Campo Baeza, Pedro Gadanho, Jason Pickleman, Zoë Ryan and Rick Valicenti. Both were important steps to establish a solid structure from which to grow in the future.
– Finally, we received incredible support from The Richard H. Driehaus Foundation who awarded us a 2-year grant. I can’t thank the foundation enough for their support of MAS Context during the last three years. In 2013 we will continue to have their support as well as the one of the Graham Foundation for Advanced Studies in the Fine Arts, who awarded us a grant in August. If you are interested in supporting MAS Context in any capacity, please do not hesitate to do so. Every amount counts.
That was a quick overview of 2012 at MAS Context. We are already working on new content for our issues in 2013, more events in Chicago (and hopefully in other cities where we have collaborators) and new ways to produce, share and fund our content.
Thank you very much to all the contributors, visitors, supporters and all of you who are in one way or another part of this initiative. 2012 was a fantastic year and we are looking forward to more in 2013.
Happy holidays and more in 2013!!!
Editor in chief