Charcoal Magazine: Mirrors (Fall Anthology)


Recently, I had the opportunity to sit down to talk with Remy, one of the founders Charcoal. This upcoming magazine focuses on celebrating artwork by students of color in the Boston area. As we sat in the Ziskind lounge in the GSU, Remy told me about Charcoal:

Is this fall anthology your first publication?

“Yes, it is our first issue. We are planning on publishing it around the end of October or beginning of November. That’s one of two that we will be doing this semester.”

Who are you looking for in terms of artists and submission?

“We’re looking for artwork from student artists of color particularly pertaining to the theme, which, this semester, is mirrors. It’s all about introspection and looking into yourself; what influences you or however else the artist interprets the theme. Illustrations, painting, photography, writing - a whole bunch of mediums - printable art.”

Will your magazine be printed?

“Yes and this first issue is the anthology issue so it focuses just on submissions from the artists just showcasing their artwork. The second issue, which will be released towards the end of the semester will be a full magazine issue so it will include original content like articles, photo essays, op-eds, profiles etc.”

In your own words, why is representation on campus so important in relation to current events?

“Well I think the issue is entering the public conscious more recently, in a way that it’s outside of the circle of people in color in general. People are becoming more aware of the fact that it needs to be more addressed. For me, I created the magazine because I wanted to see and hear from other artists who look like me and have my same experiences to build a community because I don’t feel as though there is a community for artists of color here. I wanted to help foster this community.”

What is something you want readers to take away from your upcoming anthology?

“We are trying to reach a wide audience. While the content is primarily from artists of color, we want to reach everyone. Specially for the students of color who are reading the magazine, what I would like to them to take away from it is that there is a community for you here. There is a group of people who are like you and interested in the same things. The art scene is not an impenetrable bubble.”

In comparison to other student magazines on campus, what makes your magazine unique?

“Unlike other magazines on campus, we focus specially on art—the art world, visual art—whereas the bigger magazines on campus that I know of focus on fashion. This is also focused on getting content from students of color specifically and creating content that surrounds those issues. Also we have two issues per semester where there’s the anthology and the full issue after that. We are also working on a video-interview series that will hopefully be posted sometime next month where we interview a new student artist every month.”

Is the artwork being submitted from other schools, not just BU?

“Yes, primarily from the Boston area.”

When and how can we read it?

“The end of October, we don’t have a specific date currently. At the end of the semester we will have a lunch party with both issues - the fall anthology and final issue.”

Is there anything else you’d like to add?

“We’re not through SAO; we are cosponsored by the BU arts initiative and the Howard Thurman Center. We’re bringing that interdisciplinary approach to artwork and art culture. On our website and Facebook page (linked below) we will be opening applications for our permanent team: a couple of writers, photographers, videographer, and an interviewer for the video series.”

Please check out their website for applications for their permanent team if you’re interested! And keep your eyes pealed for their debut anthology coming out in late October.