THE ISSUE 001: IDENTITY by Robyn George, et al.

MEDIUM: Magazine/Graphic Essay

IDENTITY is the inaugural publication created by The Issue: the newest student-run publication to UW-Madison covering fashion, art, culture and current events. ISSUE 001 focuses on themes of queer identity in the Madison community and on campus. It features artwork, poetry, personal commentaries, opinion articles and informative articles created by and/or for queer students. In this publication we cover topics including reactionary activism, drag performance and it’s affect on the queer community, the role of gender expression through fashion in American society, issues within the queer community itself, the experience of coming-out as queer and much more.

My name is Robyn George, I’m a junior at UW-Madison studying fashion and textile design and I created an organization known on The Issue, and serve as the Executive Editor in the creation of Issue 001: Identity. The creation of this piece really started with the founding of The Issue as an organization. After experiencing feelings of isolation and exclusion in other areas of campus involvement, I thought it was really important that black and indigenous students of color, among other marginalized student groups had a place to feel heard, seen and a place to truly express themselves through fashion, art and journalism. It was because of this that, when creating our constitution and bylaws we emphasized the importance of maintaining an inclusive, diverse and inviting culture. We also wanted to be “journalism first”, which to us means that the written content in the Issue is valued equally with aesthetics, and always aligns with our culture. When choosing a first topic, we wanted something that all the active members felt they could respond to, and we also wanted an inaugural topic that really let campus know who we were. We decided to go with Identity, and focus on the queer community because we felt it was a part of campus that hadn’t been celebrated as much as it deserved, and it was something we could all relate to. I began planning this Issue by reaching out to queer students to ask them to create content for this Issue. My fellow contributors were excited to be a part of the project and subsequently planned several photoshoots. Eventually, several students were interested in contributing, and we acquired written and visual art pieces, all showing different responses to the topic at hand. THE ISSUE 001: IDENTITY is the result.

Executive Editor: Robyn George
Deputy Editor: Zack Zens
Primary Arts Director: Filip Jawdosiuk
Financial Director: Sarah Boergriter
Makeup Director: Mara Hansen
Events Coordinator: Quintynn Vaughn
Shoot Directors: Matthew “Roachie” Lyga, Djamal Lylecyrus, Zack Zens
Makeup: Jordan Joseph and Mara Hansen
Photography: Mickey Mestiza, Karla Ponce
Writers: Quintynn Vaughn, Sydney Collins, Djamal Lylecyrus, Zack Zens, Margaret Fassbender, Filip Jawdosiuk, Robyn George
Artists: Filip Jawdosiuk, Claudia Delgado, Maja Hastings, Sophie Rewey, Isabella Begay
Models: Sheeza Herr, Draco Charles, Freya Feenix, Adelaide, LaTina Envy, Wynter DaBratt, Noah White, Zayaan Alamgir, Camille Miles, Petyon Zibel, Dani Sesini, Brigetta Hartz, Kendi Mizan.
Interviewees/Courtesy photos: QTPOC UW-Madison (Abdullah Marei).

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