Public Poster Production

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"Imprimatur," a multi-user software for poster-making, is the latest online tool for collaboration from artist Andy Deck. The software brings the design process to life, allowing multiple designers to democratically tweak the layout and statements of a single canvas. Anyone with a smidgeon of graphics experience will find the interface easy to use, and the product is a PDF that can be disseminated widely via email and print. In his background to the work, Deck refers to the proliferation of homemade posters in the aftermath of 9/11 and at the invasion of Iraq. He envisages "a wave of colorful, independent, and low-budget posters in public places" and sees "Imprimatur" as a means to channel energy into thoughtful public dialogue. Like many of his previous works, "Imprimatur" is written in Java, but this time the source code is not quite open; as a challenge to funders to support software art, Deck will only release the source code once he has received his next commission (New Radio and Performing Arts funded this one). I hope he's made a poster about that. - Helen Varley Jamieson