This past Friday, the 1st of December, we had the pleasure of hosting the launch of I Love Dick, a fanfic!
The zine is a collaboration between Daphné B. (poet and translator, and author of Bluetiful and Delete), and Kathy L. (part-time bookseller and artist based in Montréal). Back in the summer, Daphné and Kathy exchanged letters in the style of Chris Kraus' feminist cult classic written in the 90s, addressed to the eponymous Dick.
The letters analyze a variety of contemporary phenomena and cultural objects such as celebrity, memes, Google Translate, pop songs, and Vegas, through the lens of female desire and feminism. The text is interwoven with images: screenshots of internet image browsing and Youtube playlists. At the intersection of artist book, zine, and fanfiction, it is a funny, subversive, and thoughtful reflection on love, desire, and art.
Daphné and Kathy took turns reading their letters, accompanied by some Lynchian mood music. The two were then joined onstage by Marcela Huerta (former assistant editor of Drawn & Quarterly and author of Tropico), and Julie Delporte (prolific cartoonist, essayist, and author of Moi aussi je voulais l'emporter), who each read from new works. Marcela even wrote her own letter to Dick!
After the readings, Kathy screened a film entitled "Last Looks", which chopped'n'screwed footage from a Harlequin-produced TV show to map the various gazes of contempt, desire, and searching.
The readers—all D+Q staffers past and present—then partook in a "great provocative discussion about unrequited love as cultural practice, unknown terrain of female desire and selfies of crying girls" (per Heather O'Neill). Later, the conversation was further fueled by the audience in a stirring Q&A.
Thank you to everyone for packing the house, and thank you to our wonderful readers for such a memorable event!