Editorial 5: Fixate

Sarah Race "the Oddball" series

Fixate.

With our 5th issue out, we can now safely assume that you are fixated on us, as we are on you.

To fixate.
To command the attention of exclusively or repeatedly.
To be obsessively interested in something.

And, in classical psychoanalysis, fixation is said to cause the libido to be arrested at an early stage of psychosexual development. Say what?

Anyway.
We’re not here to judge.

Fixation is also to become attached to a person or thing in a pathological way; to form a fixation. We’re not endorsing this kind of behaviour, but heck, it makes for a pretty interesting theme, no?

So, why fixation? Well, truth be told it’s because the word’s gotta a bad rap, when really, it can be a pretty deviant way of talking about things that surface time and time again, that make no normal sense but exist at the core of our being. Its twisted and intense meaning is the appeal for this issue.

The cover image is from Vancouver-based photographer, Sarah Race, who documents the party. As McLeod writes, and as The Oddball series attests to, Race’s work “fixes our gaze on glimpses of the fabulous, the sensitive and the raring to go.” Be sure to flip through the entire series.

Regular collaborator, Nicholas Little, provides NMP with yet another enthralling piece. This time, Little ingeniously weaves media discourses around affirmative action, population control, and the power of statistics, with monkeys, dreams and privilege.

C’est dans le cadre de “Popolo dans le Parc” à Montréal que l’événement de films et vidéos independents, intitulé CRéATURES DANS LA NUIT, que j’ai vu – et tout de suite adoré – le travail de Lockhart.

As part of McLeod’s bimonthly video series we have the honour of showcasing Lockhart’s video on NMP for two months, as writer-curator Gabrielle Moser leads us through Lockhart’s “absurd parallel universe”.

Confession and apologies also have a part to play in the disentanglement of fixations. Since fixations are largely unspoken if not secret, confessions reveal a target and apologies reveal an intention.

Confessions of an Asian Tourist, a video by Wayne Yung brings together notions of identity and our relationship to the things that make us like others, or make us be mistaken for who we are not.

For Mariko Tamaki, apologies became her thing in grad school as she waded through the possibilities of paper topics with looming deadlines. While Tamaki’s journey began with an interest in accents in comedy, it failed anthropology’s mission, that is, until her discovery of the performative utterance: the apology.

I laughed so hard reading this article that I almost cried… and seriously considered quitting grad school, too.

NMP no.5 also includes one of the last Butch Portraits from Elisha Lim: Butch 32. If you were lucky, you got your hands on one of her prints at the auction in July. Stay tuned for more information on how and where to access her collection in the future.

This special issue includes three other illustrative projects. We are featuring the work of Momoka Allard and Onya Hogan-Finlay with The Third Leg collective. McLeod also writes about Catfight by Kirsten Johnson, examining our culture’s fetishization of and fixation on women and on violence.

Fixated on the place of women in culture – as we are – Meg Hewings and Karo Heckemeyer explore the realm of the homosocial in sports.

For Hewings, “Hockey is sensual and political – full of subterfuge, libidinal intuition, ritual, bondage and fetish.” For Heckemeyer, sexuality, in addition to gender, becomes a pivotal point in understanding public discourses fixations – of the sporting body, and of women’s muscular bodies in particular.

This issue is a feast for the brain and the eyes. Enjoy.

NMP raised a bunch of money—thanks to you, and you, and you—so that we may happily break even and carry on as before.

Thank you with all my heart the fine people who attended, performed, and played along at the fundraiser at the Gladstone Hotel in Toronto, July 29 – thank you Christina Zeidler!

As always, big love to m-c and Dayna who put on the event with the generosity of Chelsey Litchawoman, Granny Boots organiser.

To the performers – Robin Akimbo, Allyson Mitchell, Lex Vaughn, Keith Cole, Fluffy Soufflé – thank you.

To the fantastic providers of tunes – Secret Agent and DJ X-taci – thank you.

To the many many raffle donations, infinite thank you to Meow Mix (MIM Productions), Ivan Coyote, Lickety Split, Nightwood, DJ Mini, Coral Short, Nikki Forest, JJ Levigne (Lesbian Haircuts Montreal), Zoe Casino, Alexis O’Hara, JD Drummond, Jackie Gallant, Nancy Tobin, Jordi Rosen, Shannon Walsh (H2Oil), The Scandelles, Annabelle Chvostek, Hunter Valentine, Volatile Works, Farzana Doctor, Martin Tétreault, Gentleman Reg, Chelsey Litchawoman, Ina Unt Ina, Elisha Lim, Kids on TV, Lesbians on Ecstasy, Ember Swift, Dance Yourself to Death, Mariko Tamaki, Keith Cole, BBJ, Elizabeth Sweeney, Amy Kazymerchyk, Nairne Holtz, Megan Butcher, Tara Michelle Zinuck, Lex Vaughn, Good Dyke Porn, Skidmore, Pierre Dalpé, Venus Envy, Sameer Farooq, and Pink and White Productions.

And finally thank you to the happy auctioneers who ventured off with hundreds of dollars worth of delights.

And an extra special thank you to DAG – you know who you are. The love is mutual.

Un lancement officiel aura lieu à Montréal le 12 décembre, au Meow Mix à Montréal.

Le prochain numéro essence/crux contiendra plusieurs contributions en français – ce qui a beaucoup manqué aux 2 derniers numéros. Merci Fabien, Mathilde, Gabriel et m-c !

Remember to comment a lot (yes, contributors will always love your input) and as always, dear readers, we are committed to bringing forward a rebellious and conspicuous magazine bimonthly.

Mél Hogan