Useless 10-Zero —

Useless, probably the world’s most blue-chip fanzine-slash-journal, continues with its compendium of personal musings and insights into the minds of New York’s hip arty set. Cult cabaretier Justin Bond reveals his thoughts on ‘the zeros’; Nick Currie –aka Momus- tells about the most romantic day in his life in the last ten years and Max Steele talks about a band that came and went. The trannies, the popsters and painters all swirl around in a tight little demimonde in Conrad Ventur’s snapshot of a hip NYC scene creating and celebrating itself. It’s exactly what any reader wanting to know what Warhol’s latest generation of progeny might look like needs to read.

The product of an artist, it’s hardly unexpected that art should loom large in any issue of Useless. In fact, the magazine describes itself as being about ‘art and people’. And here, there are a multiplicity of articles on or interviews with artists from the internationally established to fierce young talent. It’s also likely – as is proven again in this issue- that the choices an artist might make in selecting content are rather different from those underpinned by purely commercial concerns. Again, here, we see this clearly in features such as Adam Baran’s conversation with the legendary underground figure Genesis Breyer P-Orridge or the feature retrospectively pondering the first decade of the current millennium.

From pop music to spiritual road trips, Useless travels the path less travelled by many other magazines, pulled together in a stark art direction that takes its starting point from the fanzine tradition and contemporary art rather than mainstream trends.


    Useless 10-Zero –
    December 2010 50 Pages 0 Minutes of audio 0 Minutes of video
    In This Issue –
    A Conversation With Ledy Churchman The Whitney Biennal And Create New York, Parsed Conversation With Adam Baran The Zero Zero Decade
    Editor In Chief –
    Conrad Ventur
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Our Take —

Despite the proclamation of the name, Useless magazine has managed to survive since 2004. Originating in Brooklyn as a stapled underground fanzine with music as one of its key areas, Conrad Ventur’s baby has morphed into a title that now focuses heavily on art. Printed in a limited edition of 1000 copies in an oversized newspaper-esque style, Useless has ironically benefited from becoming more niche and concentrating on art and the experimental fringes of design and creative direction instead of retaining the potentially mainstream vibe of some of its earliest content. Its shift from what could be taken as student offerings to art world credibility has seen it picked up and advocated by influential patrons of the arts, some of whom, such as Michelle Lamy, are of influence in both the fashion and art arenas. As a result, doors have opened for Useless in terms of high-profile distribution points that may have remained closed should it have opted to go in another direction..


Categories –
Music Film Culture Art

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