Creating art is an inherently accessible act. Making art available has not necessarily always been the easiest of tasks to accomplish and the majority who labor to make art accessible do so out of a kind of drive to share an appreciation of the world and the times they live in.
The creators of Sunflower Sutras answer this call with a multifaceted approach. The most tactile element being the zine (rhymes with scene) Sunflower Sutras. A zine is a collection of printable ideas bounded only by what the curators allow. In this way, a zine is rarely fit for the masses or mainstream consumption. But, in talking with Tara Bartley, what will be appreciated is really up to the beholder. She talks with enthusiasm about pieces in SUSU zine and elsewhere that did not seem like they would have the impact they eventually do. This awareness excuses the gatekeeper from their post and allows a more democratic experience in the presentation of the SUSU.
Recently, a special edition was produced in celebration of the Aaron Douglas Art Fair, an event cut a bit short by autumn showers. The edition was filled with works of varying styles and forms through the widening network of friends and associates SUSU is rapidly gaining.
Sunflower Sutras podcast, its flagship endeavor, began side-by-side with the burgeoning Washburn Radio, KRWU, but is operated and produced by Tara Bartley and Ryan Thompson. They interview writers of all stripes and look toward conversations with other artists as well.
Tara said she is looking to share the work of the folks who do their art without worry of being characterized as misfit, or non-conforming, or other. Zines are produced every month with a few specials throughout the year. A new podcast is up every two weeks.
The piece on the back of Sunflower Sutras gives you a notion that’s clear:
“We want to share the weird stuff other publishers shy away from. Whether poetry, fiction, sketches, photography, or disjointed rants, we’re here to spread art, sow chaos, and take the MAGA out of magazine.”