Art Zine Working Definition

From Value and Validity of Art Zines as an Art Form by Susan E. Thomas


Art Zine Working Definition


An artist publication could be called an art zine if it has several of these features:

  • Created by artists, designer, or architect 

  • The hand of the creator is evident (signed, illustrated, punch, stamped, etc.)

  • Limited, numbered editions are large

  • No ISSN

  • No ISBN

  • Irregular size or shape (not magazine size)

  • Not particularly sculptural or dimensional 

  • No masthead 

  • No known publishing company 

  • Independent publisher or art gallery (not fine press)

  • Available directly from creator 

  • Available from an art bookstore or zone distributor (“distro”)

  • Identified by the creator as a zine 

  • Modestly priced (less than the price of typical artists’ book, but more than traditional zines)

  • Not usually available for trade (as traditional zines are)