Grace Hong

Grace Hong will be featured at Wall of Women – a showcase of zines from female makers from across the globe – at Singapore Art Book Fair 2017.

Some people see zines as a weapon to fight or bring social issues to light. What’s the power of zine-making to you?
Zine-making for me is about getting your creative content out there quickly and cheaply. It is about getting from start to finish as soon as possible. I like to generate content that uses humor to draw light on uncomfortable topics. I don’t really think much about how it impacts others but more about how I can get someone to squirm in their seats. I think that sets people thinking.
Can you describe the local zine community where you are?
There are a lot of digital zine-makers in Singapore and they have been sharing their content online. I’ve begun doing that while giving away copies of my zines. I think zine-making has definitely picked up traction locally but I hope to really see a community that is really involved in trading and sharing zines and content generation. I think we should be less concerned about achieving perfection and more about making zines that redefines our creative landscape. 

When did you come across your first zine? And what was it about?
I came across my first zine in my third year of university. It was a collection of photos arranged in a slipshod fashion. There was no meaning to it, it was, in short, a mess. They were glued onto paper, folded and stapled. 

That was when I googled what a zine was and I was hooked since. 

Zines are always seen as ‘experimental’, ‘influenced by pop or punk culture’ and ‘not dictated by trends'. How would you describe the zines you create?

The zines I create are mostly spontaneous. I was in school so I just collaborated with my studio mates. It was interesting to see how you could also create content and share it with your school’s crappy printer and copier. Most of my content are self-driven and are very grounded in photography and established publications. In my free time, I collect magazines and flyers and these influences can be seen in my work. 
Do you think the Internet has re-shaped the zine culture?

The internet has made zines more accessible to everyone but also has affected the way zines are made and shared. As much as the zine culture has begun to catch on among creatives, zines remain elusive and mysterious because the techniques and content strays from the conventions of graphics and publications. 

More about  Grace Hong here, and be sure to catch her zines at this year's edition of Singapore Art Book Fair!