Saturday, June 4, 2022 – La Minute Monocle

Interviewer / A. A. Bronson

General rules

AA Bronson is a Canadian artist and the last surviving member of the radical General Idea collective, whose best-known work responded to 1960s counterculture and the AIDS crisis. In the 2000s, Bronson became a director of Printed Matter Inc, a nonprofit organization dedicated to promoting artists’ books. In 2005, he founded the New York Art Book Fair. Yesterday, a General Idea retrospective opened at the National Gallery of Canada in Toronto. It runs until November 20.

Coffee, tea or something rushed to go with the headlines?
Cold pressed apple juice at dawn. A jar of Fortnum & Mason Royal Blend with breakfast.

Do you prefer Saturday or Sunday?
Saturday and Sunday are two sides of the same coin for me. In our building, we are gently squeezed out by super loud construction that starts at 07:20, the water being turned off at irregular times with no warning, while people insist nothing is happening. But on Saturday and Sunday we live in blissful silence.

Do you have a favorite bookstore?
I should say Art Metropole in Toronto because General Idea founded it in 1974 and I ran it for over a decade. But I would rather say Printed Matter in New York, which opened in 1976. I was its director from 2004 to 2010. Printed Matter is a rich treasure trove of art books. In 2006 we created the NY Art Book Fair, which I like to think started an ecology of culture and artist book fairs. After that? I have a sore point for Tenderbooks in London.

What podcasts do you listen to?
I desperately want to be bad enough to be included in bad gaysa podcast about history’s diabolical and complicated queers, hosted by Huw Lemmey and Ben Miller.

What are you humming in the shower right now?
“Monotone Symphony” by Yves Klein.

Five magazines from your weekend couch pile?
As I have never found a magazine that I like better than General Idea Megazine File, which was published between 1972 and 1989, I keep a stack next to me at all times. Currently the new number of End magazine stands by her side, because I’m proud to be included.

What’s the best thing you’ve seen on TV lately?
I do not watch television.

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