Hackney-based biannual print periodical Sluice have decided to take a semi-revolutionary approach to solving the age-old problem: how do you actually go about funding a magazine?
“For this special ‘economies’ issue of the magazine, Sluice sold its cover 5mm² at a time. In what amounts to a direct peer-funding model we invited artists, galleries and arts-related businesses to buy modular exposure for whatever it is they want you to promote. Each 5mm² cost £2.50. A minimum of 2 and a maximum of 36 squares could be purchased.”
The resulting cover is an eye-catching assemblage of brands, projects, and identities.
The Sluice team, or at least art director Christian Küsters and publishing director Karl England, explain that the decision to sell off ad space in such a bold, direct, and disarming way was a reflection on the issue’s concept, which is economies. “It then became a case of trying to illustrate different economic models, and we think the micro-funding idea is a good model for DIY art projects.”
They also offered ten commercial subscribers ten units of free ad space, and each of them went on to purchase additional units, which was, as Sluice say, “inadvertently a really smart move.”
Inspired by the iconic internet legend that is the Million Dollar Homepage, the Sluice approach is certainly a brave one. Time will tell if it catches on.
The economies issue hits stores later this month.
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