Steve Lambert

is making prints for you.

Yearly Archives: 2017

Fight Back Pack #2: Defend U.S. Democracy Print

17in x 11in
Risograph on 80# French Paper

Buy One Get Five

I want to get these out in the world and don’t want cost to be a factor, so I’m letting you decide the price at “pay what you can” & I’ll send you all this:

Fight Back Pack #2 includes:

  1. At least 1 “nice” print on #80 French Paper
  2. At least 4 prints on standard paper (thin typing paper) to distribute as you see fit
  3. A few Respect and/or LIES stickers
  4. Instructions for how to find the phone numbers of local reps and ideas for places to hang the print
  5. Priority Mail shipping in a big sturdy mailer via our US Postal Service (usually $6-$10 for postage within the US)

I’m not making these to make money or further my art career. If this print is something you want to help share in your communities, I want you to have them. If you can help offset the costs of making and mailing them, it helps. All the money I get from you I’ll use to make more.

Send what you can via Paypal or Dwolla or Venmo or Square Cash or just send me a check or whatever. Be sure to include a mailing address.

About the Print

Each layer is printed separately – blue, then red, then an overlay of black. All soy and pigment based inks.

The Riso has it’s own aesthetic. It’s inherently imperfect. Having everything align perfectly can be tricky (even when you’re as highly skilled as I am!) so sometimes you get these nice, slight, misalignments and smudges. Each print is different and prints also get their own patterns of ink texture and halftone.

Download a full size PNG and print your own.

Design Drafts

The design went through many iterations, both on paper and digitally. You can see about 40 of those iterations here.

Contributed to workshop at the United Nations

I was invited back to the United Nations for a workshop envisioning UN LIVE the Museum for the United Nations on Monday. The ambition of the project is a reflection of the United Nations itself; “connecting people everywhere to the work and values of the United Nations and to catalyze global effort towards accomplishing its goals.”

I just had a small advisory role made smaller because the group they brought together was excellent. I didn’t have to say many things I often bring up in other gatherings; raising awareness is not enough, people need a sense of agency, cultural change and political change are intertwined, etc.

The project is epic in scale and will take years to complete. I’m glad to have contributed.

I’m a fan of not-boring business cards

I’m a fan of not-boring business cards. This is back of the business card of Maher Nasser, Acting Under-Secretary-General for Global Communications, Department of Public Information. Part of his job is communicating what the United Nations does. So why not tackle that on the back of a 3.5 by 2 inch card you give to everyone you meet?

Planet-B: Ideas for a New World

Proud to be include in the NRW Forum publication, Planet-B: Ideas for a New World.

Planet B: 100 Ideas for a New World

Planet B: 100 Ideas for a New World

Planet B has been curated by Alain Bieber, Nicola Funk and Joanna Szlauderbach in cooperation with Vasco Bontje (Sustainica) and Darija Šimunović (project Hörner/Antlfinger). An accompanying publication by Lukas Feireiss and Matthias Hübner presents many other utopias – from Steward Brand, through Chus Martínez and right up to Raymond Kurzweil (not a fan of Kurzweil by the way –SL) – that serve as an inspiration and encourage action.

SelfControl mentioned in Guardian

SelfControl was mentioned in “How to finish a novel: tracking a book’s progress from idea to completion” in the Guardian on Monday, March 20th.

Menmuir freely admits that social media and other online temptations were a constant distraction: “Twitter, Facebook, Guardian crosswords … I’ll pretty much do anything other than write because most things are easier than writing,” he says.

Such was the pull of online distractions that he used technology to fight technology: an app called SelfControl blocked him from using social media on his laptop when he was supposed to be working.

Chapter in Artist as Cultural Producer

I contributed a chapter to The Artist as Cultural Producer: Living and Sustaining a Creative Life (amazon, library). The book includes forty essays from “artists who have successfully expanded their practice beyond the studio and become change agents in their communities.”

It’s edited by Sharon Louden, published by the University of Chicago Press, and you can get a copy at your local bookstore, library, or amazon.

The whole essay is in the book and I’ve included an excerpt below. This excerpt was chosen by the editor, Sharon Louden, for the launch at The Strand. I’d prefer you read the whole thing from beginning to end, but the paradox of an excerpt is that it may be what gets you to read the whole thing.

Chapter Excerpt

When I was young I was often told the future was wide-open and full of possibility. But the means to that end was a strict and prescriptive path. Follow instructions, work hard in school, continue on to the best college possible, and from there you’re free to pursue your dreams! And be warned: not following this path will lead to limited options and likely failure. You can do whatever you want with your life, but you have to do this first. The problem was I couldn’t stand school.

I was a good student. I was curious and wanted to do well, my grades were good, I was liked by teachers and fellow students, but over time I wanted more than what my public high school could offer; for example the few art classes offered were a joke, music was about rote performance rather than creation and composition, subjects like photography and film didn’t exist. So out of obligation I set my desires aside and continued to push myself in areas that felt less and less relevant as I advanced; upper-level math, college level history courses, marching band, track and field, and so on. I was disciplined, endured as much as I could, and tried to channel my frustration into improving the situation the ways I saw how. I sought out information on my own with the spare time I had, and even tried to improve the school by running for, and becoming, class president – this didn’t work. Over time my effort wore down to indifference, then to resentment. Yet every weekday I had to come back, continue to work hard, and came to hate it.

All the details leading up to being committed to a psychiatric hospital are not relevant here, but this antipathy with school was layered onto other issues including a family health crisis and a death, severe migraine headaches, stress, and a lack of skills in coping or even speaking about my problems. It all collided. I was overwhelmed, in physical pain, severely depressed, and felt exhausted in every way – I’d run out of ideas and could feel myself self-destructing. I withdrew and internalized – I didn’t tell anyone because I didn’t know how. There’s a lot I’m leaving out, but it was bad. I needed it all to stop and felt if I could die somehow, at least I could have relief.
Someone happened to ask me the right questions at a specific moment and caught a glimpse of what was happening inside. I was checked into a hospital later that day on an involuntary hold – though at that point I was ready to volunteer. That intervention saved my life.
Those months spent in treatment became a turning point. Over the next few years I learned skills to manage stress in my life, but more importantly, I felt like I narrowly cheated death. Doing what I was told had been a total failure so I could now, rightfully, say fuck it all. I had license to reshape my life as I pleased.

When I checked out of the hospital I took a state test to leave high-school. I had no idea where I was headed, but whatever I did would be better than before.

The contrast was unreal. The outcome of my hospitalization was independence. I felt freed from constraints that had completely failed for me and released into an open space where I could choose how to move forward. There were options and I could make choices. It was the best possible outcome from a horribly painful situation and I am still so grateful for it.

The echo of these experiences are in nearly every art work I make. My work is about sharing liberation and agency. We don’t have to accept our world as it is, the ways we’re told we should navigate it, nor the costs and misery that come along with it that benefit so few. I don’t want to make art that just points out problems. I want to go further than suggesting solutions. What I’m trying to do is offer the experience I had – to give people the feeling of liberation and power that I felt. The democratic ideal that we’re not subject to culture: we can create it. And I trust they will go on and do so.

Fight Back Pack #1

Note: As of April 16, 2017, I’ve turned my focus to Fight Back Pack #2, if you really want this one contact me first and I’ll see what I can do.

Pay what you can & I’ll send you all this:

The fight back pack

  1. At least 1 Respect risograph print on #80 French Paper
  2. At least 4 risograph prints on standard paper (thin typing paper) to distribute as you see fit
  3. At least 5 Respect stickers
  4. At least 2 Lies stickers
  5. Shipping in a big sturdy mailer via our US Postal Service

And, as hinted by the “at least” above: a surprise or two.

Buy One Get Five

The idea is to have you help distribute these. If you want to request one of the phrases I’ve used at the bottom, let me know. Also, you can include other pay what you can items or a Capitalism Works for Me True/False print as well, since I’ll be going to the post office anyway.

I’m not making these to make money or further my art career. If this print is something you want in your life and to share in your communities, I want you to have them. If you can help offset the costs of making and mailing them, it helps. All the money I get from you I’ll use to make more.

Send what you can via Paypal or Dwolla or Venmo or Square Cash or just send me a check or whatever.

Respect is an American Value Prints

17in x 11in
Risograph on 80# French Paper

Buy One Get Five

Note: I’ve turned my attention to Fight Back Pack #2. If you really want these prints, contact me first so I can see what’s left of my inventory

Pay what you can & I’ll send you all this:

The fight back pack

  1. At least 1 “nice” print on #80 French Paper (like this)
  2. At least 4 prints on standard paper (thin typing paper) to distribute as you see fit
  3. At least 5 Respect stickers
  4. At least 2 Lies stickers
  5. Shipping in a big sturdy mailer via our US Postal Service

And, as hinted by the “at least” above: a surprise or two. If you want to specify one of the phrases at the bottom for the nice print, let me know. Also, you can include other pay what you can items or a Capitalism Works for Me True/False print as well, since I’ll be going to the post office anyway.

I’m not making these to make money or further my art career. If this print is something you want in your life and to share in your communities, I want you to have them. If you can help offset the costs of making and mailing them, it helps. All the money I get from you I’ll use to make more.

Send what you can via Paypal or Dwolla or Venmo or Square Cash or just send me a check or whatever.

Why so “American”?

I’ve been building on the Respect is an American Value design – making stickers and now prints.

Including words like “honor” and “respect,” using red white and blue, and borrowing elements from the shield of the Great Seal of the United States are all a conscious effort to appeal to those who may not be ready to immediately agree with the content. Like Capitalism Works For Me! True/False, the hope is to have people like the aesthetics before they’ve read what it actually says.

How it comes together

This is printed on an older Risograph machine we have in the New Media program at SUNY Purchase. The machines are like a combination of a mimeograph, screenprinting, and photocopying.

Each layer is printed separately – red, then blue, then an overlay of black soy and pigment based inks. You can see each stage of the process in the animation.

Process animation

The Riso has it’s own aesthetic. It’s inherently imperfect. Having everything align perfectly can be tricky (even when you’re as highly skilled as I am!) so sometimes you get these nice, slight, misalignments and smudges. Each print is different and prints also get their own patterns of ink texture and halftone. Below is an example of a nicely “misaligned” print.

Example of slight misalignment (but it still looks good!)

Below is a very short video of the last stage of the print being made on the machine.

Book signing at The Strand in NYC

I contributed a chapter to The Artist as Cultural Producer: Living and Sustaining a Creative Life (amazon, library).

I’ll be reading a section and signing books at The Strand as part of the launch for the book. The book includes forty essays from artists who have successfully expanded their practice beyond the studio and become change agents in their communities.

Artist as Cultural Producer Event at The Strand
Thursday March 2: 7:00PM – 8:00PM
828 Broadway (& 12th Street)
New York, Ny 10003