An exhibition presented by Secret Riso Club
November 24, 2023 - January 5, 2024
Printed Matter - New York

Dimensions is a collaborative project from Secret Riso Club, a Brooklyn based independent publisher, design studio, and printing workshop. Through interviews with 10 artist publishers across the world, the group maps out the tangible and intangible dimensions of their practices and works to make the invisible aspects of independent publishing visible. How do independent publishers and artists spend their hours and days? What are the connections, resources, research, reflection, and administrative labor that shape and form the body of work?

As a small publisher and as artists, we take on a wide range of roles. We have the privilege and responsibility to be everything — admin, personal caretaker, physical laborer, artist. While this can often feel like an endless juggling of tasks and responsibilities, the dance in and of itself informs the process. The tangible-intangible aspects, links and networks that build our practices seemingly live in discrete realms (dimensions) but in reality they are inseparable. They mix, overlap and weave a complex, dynamic network that continually changes. Taking time to evaluate where one’s time is spent, how that aligns with one’s priorities and conceptions of self and leaning into other concepts can readjust and change one’s practice.

This exercise explores the individual experiences of a variety of artists’ practices within the independent publishing field with the intention of identifying the interacting facets of our collective work. How do independent publishers and artists spend their hours and days? What are the connections, resources, research, reflection, and administrative labor that shape and form the body of work? Through conversation and interviews with others in the field, “Dimensions” aims to make these invisible aspects of our practice visible; the relationships between the internal and external world, the personal and mental space, the processes, the growth, the priorities and daily life. 
Leafing through a book or looking at a print, we’re often seeing just one aspect of the artist/publisher’s experience. We don’t see or think about all the other connections, resources, research, reflection, and administrative work that the body of work was born from.

This project is based on our own practices, research, relationships and personal experiences. While we aim to be objective, we’re aware that our own personal origins, biases, privileges and worldview have an undeniable influence on this work and that others may have very different experiences.

This is an ongoing project. We will continue to grow the map with contributions from more publishers and further reflection.

Tara Ridgedell and Gonzalo Guerrero, Secret Riso Club


We’ve mapped out the tangible-intangible aspects of our experience as independent publishers into four categories; INWARD; OUTWARD; LABOR/PRODUCTION; BODY OF WORK.

INWARD encompassing the act of self-reflection, of intrapersonal dissection of the external, and of dreaming.


OUTWARD referring to the interpersonal connections with others, fostering of relationship and community building.

LABOR & PRODUCTION including all processes involved in creation, production, organization and administration.

BODY OF WORK being the published pieces that the public interacts with and that lend themselves to the formation of the publisher identity, however fluid.


Reading List

This Reading List was compiled by SRC and other contributors to the Dimensions exhibition. The list includes many publisher artists who have written about the practice of publishing, art books fairs, financial practices and art books through various perspectives.

Download (PDF)

︎︎︎ 11 independent artist-publishers were asked to share dimensions of their practices.
See their responses below or read via PDF.


Hannah Yukiko Pierce ︎︎︎ Small Editions

Brooklyn, NY

Small Editions is a book studio and artist book publisher. The money earned from commissioned design and production projects is used to fund artist book projects, which are made in collaboration with early-mid career artists, and range from risograph printed zines to limited edition bookworks. Our projects focus on the book as a form of art, rather than a vehicle for artworks. Small Editions was founded in 2012 by Corina Reynolds and Kimberly McClure, and has existed in its current iteration since 2019 under the leadership of Hannah Yukiko Pierce.

Hannah Yukiko Pierce (she/her) took over Small Editions after starting interdisciplinary art and design periodical lōkē magazine in 2018. With a background in arts administration and design strategy, Pierce began publishing as a means of making art and promoting artists without directly participating in the traditional art world scene.


Holly Meadows-Smith & Mollie Underwood ︎︎︎ Irrelevant Press

Brooklyn, NY & Oakland, CA

Irrelevant Press is a zine collective and internet shop based in Oakland, Brooklyn, and the world wide web. We have been working together for almost 9 years (!) to create, print, and publish paper goods – whether that’s zines, prints, or books. We started out in Oakland with a risograph and access to digital printers through one collective member’s work at a commercial print shop, initially focusing on our own zines (about the internet and pop culture), and have grown into a second studio in New York, also with a risograph, focusing much more on printing and publishing work of others artists. As a collective, our biggest motivation for making is building community around the specific content we print. We love making things with first time zinesters and collaborating closely with new artists. To us, zine culture is all about accessibility, so we try to provide a platform that removes as many barriers to entry as possible.


Zoë Pulley

Brooklyn, NY

Zoë Pulley (b.1993) is a designer and maker who utilizes stuff to surface the seemingly ordinary stories of Black folks through mixed media, typography, and audio. She defines “stuff” as artifacts both physical and nonphysical that may be relegated as unimportant to some—as merely stuff.

Most recently, Pulley has shown work in a group exhibition, Dress Code at the Newport Art Museum and a performance at RISD Museum. Her practice includes ongoing collaborations such as a wearable line inspired by her grandmother called GRAN SANS and a collectively authored publication titled Black Joy Archive. In 2021 she designed a zine for Combahee’s Radical Call: Black Feminisms (re)Awaken Boston at the Boston Center for the Arts. Her work is held in the collections of The Valentine Museum, the Hardvard Radcliffe Institute, and Printed Matter. Pulley is an inaugural recipient of the Rhode Island School of Design Society of Presidential Fellowship and was awarded the Graduate Graphic Designer to Watch by GDUSA in 2023.

She earned a BFA from Virginia Commonwealth University in 2015 and an MFA in graphic design from Rhode Island School of Design.

Zoë is currently an Artist-In-Residence at The Studio Museum In Harlem and a designer at Wolff Olins.


Jaime Sebastián & Rubén Montesinos ︎︎︎ Handshake

Valencia, Spain

Handshake is the collaborative design practice of Jaime Sebastián and Rubén Montesinos. With an emphasis on printed matter, they design and execute publications, visual identities, websites, packaging design, apparel, and photography for clients in very diverse fields, either at a large or small scale. In addition to the studio practice, Handshake operates as a platform for publishing printed matter, retail store, and divulgation; by holding events, exhibitions, and lectures. Focusing on visual arts and exploring the limits of contemporary publishing practices, Handshake collaborates with contemporary artists to create unique and experimental projects while having fun in the process.

Alongside Aythami Castellano and Iván Santana in 2020 they created Recreo Valencia Art Book Fair focused on decentralizing the focus of attention on European design and covering new languages of contemporary creation, helping to strengthen the circuit of art book fairs from less positioned Mediterranean countries.

Darío Marroche ︎︎︎ Microutopías

Montevideo, Uruguay

microutopías is a Uruguayan publication studio; it is oriented toward art books, zine production, and risograph pressings rooted in micropolitical artistic works in the collective construction of new dissident narratives and visual poetics from the South. The studio is run by Darío Marroche (he/they), sharing publishing practices with PS Montevideo, a member of the worldwide Publication Studio network since 2020. They are an organizer of the Montevideo Art Book Fair since 2018 and member of the “Lumbung of publishers”, international publishing network formed from participation in Documenta 15 in Kassel (2022).

Considering editing and publishing as a collaborative artistic practice, focused on printed art, artists books and graphic activism actions, from a critical, everyday and micro perspective, we explore the format and graphic resource as a narrative element of the works, expanding their interpretations and the creation of meaning and subjectivities in the readers. We use publishing as a communication tool and promotion of artistic-poetic-political discourses.


Rada Nastai ︎︎︎ Bruise Studio

Berlin, Germany

Bruise Studio is a Berlin-based publishing house and artist studio. Behind the studio is the bookmaker, photographer and artist Rada Nastai that started self-publishing using a riso-based practice in 2016. The need for more collaborative projects and taking a more outer role to the process of bookmaking has led to bruise, which started with two GR machines in her bedroom.

I am interested in the book as a tool for radical art making: the way it can revolutionize the exhibition space and art institutions through democratizing distribution, affordability when it comes to art collection, and enabling the direct support to the artist and maker, while bypassing gatekept, inaccessible systems.

The book has worked as a contraption that has supported social, political and cultural communities and movements, empowering and archiving their truths. My practice is based in trying to maintain this grassroots spirit of book making, and investigate through conceptual exploration, storytelling and humor its shape and expressibility.


Kiko Tiu, Pau Tiu & Felize Camille ︎︎︎ Future Fellow / Bad Student

New York & Manila, Philippines

Future Fellow is Bad Student’s creative studio operating in New York and Manila. The studio is the synthesis of the diverse artistic backgrounds and talents of its founders; Kiko Tiu, Pau Tiu & Felize Camille. With expertise in art, design, illustration, film and print, Future Fellow is a creative force in the pursuit of play, imagination and exploration into the future.

Pau Tiu is a Risograph artist and the Studio Director of Bad Student Press. Since 2018, they have conducted numerous Risograph workshops in the Philippines and have taught hundreds of students about the art of Risograph printing, both in-person and online. They have also hosted workshops in collaboration with brands such as Nike, Shake Shack and Uniqlo. Kiko Tiu is an Industrial Designer, Printmaker & Filmmaker. Kiko has been training as a Risograph Artist for 3 years under Bad Student and has exhibited his Risograph Artworks in Tokyo & Brooklyn. Felize Camille is a multidisciplinary artist, specializing in Illustration and Design. She is the Lead Illustrator, Art Director & Executive Producer of Future Fellow and Bad Student projects. She focuses her time working in the intersection of education, non-profit work and tech.

@_badstudent  @futurefellow

Amanda Chung & Chris Lucero ︎︎︎ Lucky Risograph

Brooklyn, NY

lucky risograph is an Asian and Hispanic-owned print press and design studio based in DUMBO, Brooklyn. Since our establishment in 2018, we have continued incorporating the eco-conscious, accessible, and affordable nature of risograph printing into our everyday practice. We collaborate with artists, small businesses, and grassroots organizers to translate their voices and work into art books, zines, and prints.

In 2019, along with our friends at Zine Hug, we created Sounds about Riso, an annual multi-faceted festival celebrating all things riso. Our mission has been to provide accessible resources for independent publishing (with a focus on risograph), embracing imperfections, tactile learning, and sharing the process! Sounds about Riso continue to evolve each year, but in the past, we’ve organized an open call, mentorship program, virtual and in-person showcase, talks, and workshops. We hope to introduce and uplift emerging creators and aspiring zine-makers to get their hands on the 🌼joy🌼 of independent publishing.


Be Oakley ︎︎︎ GenderFail

Brooklyn, NY

GenderFail is a publishing, programming and archiving platform run solely by Be Oakley. GenderFail is not non-for-profit but profit-for-survival or profit-to-continue-our-work-without-other-means-of-capital and most importantly to make money for others I publish, to create profit-for-labor. With GenderFail, publishing is personal, it’s the means of my livelihood and a tool for the dissemination of imperfect, but powerful ideas. For GenderFail, we seek to publish works that expand queer subjectivity by looking at queerness as an identity that challenges capitalist, racist, ableist, xenophobic, transphobic, homophobic, misogynistic, and anti-environmental ideologies.


George Wietor ︎︎︎ Issue Press

Grand Rapids, MI

Issue Press is a tiny publisher and Risograph print shop operated by George Wietor (hi!) in Grand Rapids, Michigan. Since 2011, it has worked with an elastic mandate to publish captivating works by artists of all mediums that trade in humor, history, and exploration of place.

In addition to publishing, I have initiated several side projects dedicated to the growth of the international Riso community, including; An Atlas of Modern Risography; and with Matt Davis of Perfectly Acceptable Press, I am a co-founder of the North American Risograph Conference (NARC), a gathering of Riso devotees held occasionally in Chicago, Illinois.


Gonzalo Guerrero & Tara Ridgedell ︎︎︎ Secret Riso Club

Brooklyn, NY

Secret Riso Club is a graphic design and risograph studio that focuses its work on the intersection of social justice, art, design and community building. In our practice, we work to build a platform that serves as a collaborative space for developing ideas and new projects. SRC is run in collaboration between Gonzalo Guerrero and Tara Ridgedell.

Gonzalo Guerrero (he/him) created SRC in 2017 a few years after immigrating to NYC from Chile. As a designer, Gonzalo’s practice is focused on the use of printing as a tool to experiment and explore ideas around identity, activism and culture. Tara Ridgedell (she/her) has a background in education and comes to the practice with accessibility in mind. Her work focuses on both inward and outward connection and breaking down capitalism’s individual-centered focus. In addition to running SRC operations, Tara also runs Practice Print, our in-house screen-printing studio.

@secret_ riso_club

Participating Publishers:

George Wietor of Issue Press
Grand Rapids, MI

Rada Nastai of Bruise Studio
Berlin, Germany

Jaime Sebastián and Rubén Montesinos of Handshake Studio
Valencia, Spain

Zoë Pulley
New York, NY

Darío Marroche of Microutopías
Montevideo, Uruguay
Hannah Yukiko Pierce of Small Editions
Brooklyn, NY

Holly Meadows-Smith and Mollie Underwood of Irrelevant Press
Brooklyn, NY and Oakland, CA

Be Oakley of GenderFail
Brooklyn, NY

Amanda Chung and Chris Lucero of Lucky Risograph
Brooklyn, NY

Kiko Tiu, Pau Tiu & Felize Camille of Future Fellow / Bad Student
New York & Philippines

Exhibition Support

This exhibition is supported, in part, by the National Endowment for the Arts, public funds from the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs in partnership with the City Council, and the New York State Council on the Arts.

In-kind support by Conveyor Studio.

Recreo Art Book Fair x Handshake

Valencia, Spain 
October 2023

︎︎︎ photos by @brava_es 


Open Studio 

October 7th - 2023
Photos by Oswaldo García 

Berlin Popup at The Boys Club

September 1st - 2023 / Berlin, Germany


Interview by Ayianna Kelley

Staying Power is a print and online publishing platform dedicated to amplifying a people’s history of public housing.
Ariana Faye Allensworth, an artist, designer, and cultural worker from San Francisco created the project “Staying Power”, which was made for uplifting the voices of those in public housing, and as stated by Allensworth herself, “amplifying a people’s history of public housing”. For those who are unaware, public housing is, in Allensworth’s words, “housing that is government owned and operated, and often requires residents to pay a fixed percentage of their household income. It provides a model of ensuring true housing affordability and housing security by protecting housing stocks from market-driven forces and sheltering the poor, disabled, working class, and seniors.” She also hopes to strip the public housing system of its negative stereotypes, which many hardworking Americans greatly rely on for housing and shelter. Without further ado, here is how the interview went.

Can you please explain what your project is, and what it is recorded on? (Ex. a poster, a book, a magazine, etc.)

    The project takes place on the website Staying Power, which is considered an archive for the research used in the project including in depth history on public housing, but also more recent events surrounding the issue. It was also printed as a zine-styled booklet with the Secret Riso Club in 2022.

“The project is kind of envisioned as a multi-volume– an open edition sort of publication series, and so the first volume of the project, I released in spring 2022 in the format of a booklet/zine.”  

Did you grow up in housing? If so, what was your experience with it?

    Although she did not grow up in public housing herself, Allensworth’s parents did for many years, and relied on it for stability.

“A combination of public housing and section 8 housing vouchers are sort of what allowed them to be among the working part of San Francisco, but able to afford living in the city.”

What was the impetus behind starting up this project and creating this publishing platform?

    One thing that she said was an inspiration for her project was the anti-eviction mapping project, a project that focuses on resisting gentrification in low-income neighborhoods. It also keeps information about public housing, other projects related to the topic, and how others can support the cause. The book “Black Exodus” was also a huge motivator, as it speaks on black migration after the civil war, and how many historically black neighborhoods came to be.

“I’ve been a long standing member of the Housing Justice Collective called the anti-eviction mapping project, which is a research and digital media project that focuses on documenting displacement and crafting tools for resistance in solidarity with gentrifying communities.” -Allensworth

When initially building out this publication, did you have any guiding principles in mind as to how to structure the content? What was your original vision?

    Some goals at the beginning of the project were to inform, include, and distribute. She hopes to reach multiple audiences with this project, including public housing residents in a celebratory way, and non-residents in hopes that they will support the cause. She plans to do this by releasing her project through multiple forms of media such as physical zines, the website, and hopefully a documentary style video later down the line.

    She also wanted to show that there is a negative stigma surrounding public housing, and to prove that public housing is not a bad thing, and the people relying on it are not lazy and incapable as the media portrays them to be. She wanted to include youth, and did this by interviewing students and colleagues in the public housing system to help gain insight for accuracy in her project.

“The stories in the zine really showcase stories of resilience and advocacy and joy and belonging that are often not like the stories you hear when public housing is covered in the news or media.”

Can you describe the process of seeking out interviewees and how you decided to center their stories in particular?

    Getting interviewees was not hard according to Allensworth. She says that she interviewed many former students and colleagues, as she used to work in the education system and has many ties from there. Besides that, information about her project passed mostly by word of mouth, which was effective in getting many interviews from different perspectives, and adding diversity to the project. Some interviews were held remotely due to the pandemic, but she was able to do in person interviews once the quarantine was lifted.

    She centered the stories around a history narrative format, and wanted the people to drive the narrative. She wanted to make sure she accurately depicted their thoughts in her project, and found this to be the best way to do so. In her interviews, she asked about the interviewees early life, family life, and how they came to New York as a little introduction. She then went into the interviewees' experiences by asking about how they got to that apartment, how long they lived there, and even asked about their opinions on the apartment itself.

“One of the reasons why I gravitated to oral history as an interview methodology is because it enables the narrator to self direct or guide what they share in the interview as opposed to a more journalistic style interview.”

Were there any common statements across your interviewers, or anything specific that stood out to you from any of them?

    Some commonalities Allensworth saw throughout her interviews were that most residents also wanted to set the record straight in regards to the negative stereotypes of public housing. She said that despite the negativity surrounding it, she sensed a feeling of confidence from the people she interviewed.

    Another thing she saw was brought up often was the decline in the upkeep and community in public housing, and a change in the vibe in general. They said people in the neighborhood do not give off the same feeling of family anymore, which is something they wish to bring back.

“I think everyone I interviewed gave voice to the experience of stereotypes about public housing residents, the impact that those stereotypes had on them, and their sense of confidence.”

What might be some subjects you’d like to explore in additional volumes of Staying Power? How would you like to add to this project?

    To add onto her current project, Allensworth said she would like to work on a project in California revolving around a region that was founded by her black ancestors that were former slaves. She said she would like to go into the history of the town while including examples of social housing and comparing it to her current project “Staying Power”. Unfortunately, the majority of the original residents have passed, so a lot of her research will be through archives, historians, and other activists with similar goals. She said she would like to one day make a documentary using said research to go with the project.

“I’m working on a project about Allensworth, California, which is a free black community which was founded by my ancestors in the early 1900s. It was the first town in California to be founded by and for black people, and it was self-governed for formerly enslaved and other free black people to live and thrive free from the forces of racism.” 

Last words

Lastly, at the end of the interview, Allensworth decided to give a shout out to the organization “Save Section 9”, which is a non-profit organization with the goal of ending the privatization of public housing. A major problem for public housing residents is that public housing is slowly ending up in the hands of landlords, making it no longer public and not as reliable. Save Section 9 aims to stop this. Allensworth is asking you, as someone who has viewed her work and read this article, to help support them.

You can do this by clicking this link and following their instructions.

Take Action — Section 9 is Public Housing

“They are called ‘Save Section 9’ because currently public housing is funded under section 9, which is a type of housing, and privatization would shift it to section 8 housing, which would allow them to shift management to private landlords, leaving a lot to fear. So I would just amplify their work.”