Book Review: TENbyTEN

TENbyTEN edited by Annette Ferrara

This Chicago journal's subtitle is "Space for Visual Culture", hinting at the wide range of material contained within its square pages. With the current issues' theme of "cheap", features include Andrea Zittel's pulp art; photo essays of Canal Street in New York, Maxwell Street in Chicago, and organic coffee growers in Mexico; and Doug Garofalo's inexpensive solution to improve TENbyTEN's office, among others. Amazingly the authors and subjects rarely stray from the theme, offering multiple interpretations on the meaning of cheap and creating a cohesive read from beginning to end despite the various voices. Its structure, broken into roughly three sections (Scope: short blurbs near the front of the journal, Survey: like it says, a survey of current art, film, music, and so forth, with longer features placed between the two), also helps in providing additional coverage within its slim 64 pages.

A feature in the March 5 Chicago Reader announces that TENbyTEN will increase its publication in September of this year, at the same time increasing its size and coverage; all this coming on the heels of a new publisher. Spurred by the popularity of magazines like Dwell, Wallpaper* and Nest, TENbyTEN promises to be a new competitor, hopefully retaining its appealing thematic focus and breadth of interesting coverage.