Art, Struggle, Signal

Political art gets its due. In fact, sometimes the same historic material becomes overexposed and loses its import. Signal: A Journal of International Political Graphics & Culture (currently two issues are published) is a welcome addition to the scholarship and documentation of this genre. Alec Dunn, an illustrator, and Josh MacPhee, a founder of the Interference Archive, have edited a pocket-size journal that covers important new ground. For instance, the English anarchist broadsheet Freedom, which ran from 1886 through 1927, is a terrific find. Even torn and tattered, it shows the passion and ferocity of the UK group. Taiji Yamaga’s “Yamaga Manga” is a hand-drawn visual autobiography that reveals his anti-government status and travails. And a story on Red Mother (1969–1978) surveys the woodcut graphics of this Danish political movement. Signal is an ongoing series focused on activist artists and academic researchers, as well as an active forum for critique of the role of art in revolution.

The publisher, PM Press, states:

In the U.S. there is a tendency to focus only on the artworks produced within our shores or from English speaking producers. Signal reaches beyond those bounds, bringing material produced the world over, translated from dozens of languages and collected from both the present and decades past. Although a full color printed publication, Signal is not limited to the graphic arts. Within its pages you will find political posters and fine arts, comics and murals, street art, site specific works, zines, art collectives, documentation of performances and articles on the often overlooked but essential role all of these have played in struggles around the world.

3 thoughts on “Art, Struggle, Signal

  1. dejan krsic

    actually, we like hi res images as they make valuable online resource.
    but I wanted to comment on something else, Signal seems to be such bad choice for the mag name, as most famous Signal was one printed by Nazis as political-military propaganda.

  2. Nick Staal


    Love getting your emails. However, I can never enjoy them until I get to a desktop computer. They are almost impossible to read on a phone because the images are so large and take forever to download. Would love it if you could optimize your images to appropriate sizes for e-blasts. Each image in this blast is about 1.5 MB. I was able to save down to 140 KB without any loss of quality.