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The State of the Arts in Canada: Is Your Love Supernatural? and Interview with In My Bed Magazine

Is Your Love Supernatural?

On Friday the 13th, In My Bed Magazine will team up with Gallery 1313 for Is Your Love Supernatural?, a live edition of the magazine’s seventh publication, and the gallery’s first fundraiser.

Rosanna Ciulla, In My Bed’s editor, sat down over tea with us in a Spadina coffee bar to talk about the upcoming show, and the magazine itself.

In My Bed Magazine (inmybedmagazine.com/) is a two-year old online magazine that appears quarterly in the inboxes of about seven hundred and fifty people. These brightly coloured and professionally slick PDFs deliver literary and illustrative content that Ciulla and her team hope is a different approach to sex in the Canadian scene.

The sweet-faced editor explains that while the concept of a sex-themed publication is not new, IMB is unique in that it lists contributors and staff from all over the world, distributes for free (readers subscribe by entering their email address on the magazine’s website), and strives to approach sex, or sexual topics, through art – as the intriguing pictures and layouts of her magazine imply.

Ciulla hasn’t been alone in her IMB endeavours. IMB currently boasts a “dynamic and passionate” team of volunteers: four designers, two foreign editors, a photo editor, cover designer, and a Toronto-based graphic design firm. “My team is essential”, Ciulla confides, “they define (In My Bed)”.

Ciulla reveals that an online magazine was never her intention, but for now, she’s found the internet to be an ideal method of getting her publication to readers, as well as finding contributors and staff. Once Ciulla settled on the simple and catchy title ‘In My Bed’, she put together her team of editors, artists, and designers; finding her staff exclusively through Craigslist.

Contributors, too, are sought after almost exclusively over the internet, as she and her staff post calls on sites such as Craigslist, Akimbo, and Places for Writers – “all free places”, add Ciulla. “We have submissions from Germany, France… everywhere!” says Ciulla, who clearly finds interacting with her artists rewarding.

Ciulla, a Toronto resident of only three years, has previously lived in Vancouver and the Czech Republic, and confesses she is a born wanderer. She is an artist herself, with a background in performance art, but thus far she has not submitted anything to her magazine – “besides energy”, she amends – though she hints she may one day do so anonymously. Ciulla seems wholehearted in her position as editor: “I like to see our contributors excited, and develop a rapport with the artists”.

Ciulla is quick to add, though, that she may soon have more on her plate than just editing IMB. She has spoken to a television producer in the past about bringing her concepts to the screen, and, though her first priority is finding a way to edit and organize events for In My Bed full time, she has plans for books, and dreams of having her own space, or artist community, with which to create further. Though these ambitions could easily overpower a less determined artist, Ciulla has the secrets to literary and artistic success in a firm grasp.

“You have to pick one project to engage you completely”, she said, “and establish a system. Then you can gradually build on things over time… it’s all about time management. Putting (projects) on the back burner is just abusing them – you have to maintain your relationship with your project to get something done. You have to keep the fire lit.”

How will In My Bed keep the fire lit, post Is Your Love Supernatural?? Ciulla tells us that this winter may bring the magazine’s first print issue, which she hopes will be an amalgamation of all of the art and performances from their live edition at Gallery 1313, with a few additional pieces. (If not, this issue will appear, as expected, as a PDF in the inboxes of In My Bed’s subscribers, as Ciulla and her team plot the future).

The future is much on Ciulla’s mind with In My Bed. She plans that IMB will be publishing each issue in print within the next two years, and hopes to team up with another group to release a double issue in the near future.

In My Bed will also become a biannual, rather than a quarterly, magazine in 2010. “My team is getting too busy to handle more than two issues per year”, Ciulla says, adding that she also hopes to organize at least one show per year in the future.

For now, you can interact with In My Bed this Friday at Gallery 1313. Is Your Love Supernatural? will begin at 7pm (the show is $10 in advance (call 416-536-6778) and $15 at the door – funds go to Parkdale’s famed Gallery 1313), and will feature spoken word performances including poetry, video, and editor Ciulla presenting a welcoming speech as a live table of contents. The show will also feature visual artworks, a cash bar, finger food, and, Ciulla says, possibly some body painting.

Check the Facebook group for a unique event that will actually live up to it’s boast of “erotic party”, and we’ll see you Friday the 13th.

In My Bed Magazine : http://inmybedmagazine.com
Gallery 1313: http://www.g1313.org/
Is Your Love Supernatural on Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/home.php#/event.php?eid=163762954297&ref=ts

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