Monsters and Dust

Fall 09 issueLinks


Monsters and Dust is an online arts and culture journal of the innovative, fantastic, fabulous, subversive, radical, thoughtful, hilarious, witty, shrewd, cynical, optimistic, dark, surreal, and sublime. Our first issue hit the internet after much anticipation, delay, and various complications involving computer code and pepper spray, in November 2009.

contact us: editors[at]monstersanddust[dot]com

Fall 09    »Editors & Staff    »Submissions     »Contributors

Editors & Staff

Chris Pappas - Editor in Chief
Quintessential Virgo.

Aay Preston-Myint - Editor in Chief
Loves computers and hot tamales.

Joe Proulx - Editor in Chief
Like that of a bold young stag.


Matt Kessler - Columnist, XOXO
Eye Rocket Books * Twitter * Vice Online

Mel Racho - Web Developer

Latham Zearfoss - Columnist, Free Gaze
Latham hails from the sticks in Ohio, but has made Chicago his home for nearly the last decade. He is a film and video artist and curator engaged in the epic inner struggle between party girl and renaissance man. Latham still believes in the transformative power of art, and that you should too. He is no more an expert on moving images than anyone else, and that is precisely why he decided to write this column. He can currently be found charming his way toward an MFA at the University of Illinois at Chicago.


Robbie Haynes & Kate McCombs - Fall Interns


We at M&D are always looking for original poetry, fiction, non-fiction, visual art and media relating to the themes set forth for each issue. The theme for our forthcoming Spring/Summer 2010 issue is "Flowers." Please feel free to interpret this in any way you choose - we welcome the abstract notion, the freely-associated, the sidelong glance, and the bluntly literal with equal enthusiasm.

That said, we would like to stress that we are most interested in representing new/original works that are timely, critical, fun, and work well within the design context of the Internet. Please look at past submissions to get a feel for the magazine, its aesthetic, and ways to relate (or not relate) to the theme, or contact us before working on a submission. A limited number of submissions outside the theme will be considered.

The deadline for proposals is May 15th, 2010. Notice of accepted proposals will be sent out shortly after, with final submissions of work due July 1st. Proposals and submissions can be sent in any digital media format. Questions and materials can be directed to editors[at]monstersanddust[dot]com. Please include “Flowers” in your subject heading.

In addition, we are also accepting proposals for upcoming issues on a rolling basis. Issue #4, Barter, will be released in Fall 2010. Specific deadlines TBA. Think about it.

Contributors - Fall 2009

Sam Axelrod was born in Manhattan in 1980. It's hazy since then. He used to have a band in Chicago called The Narrator. He is a senior editor and regular contributor for Take the Handle.

M.W. Blackburn was born south of LA and presently lives in Brooklyn. Afterall, Art in America, Aperture, Brooklyn Rail, Cabinet Magazine, CTHEORY,, loudpaper (architectural discourse), and Women & Performance have published Blackburn's work. In New York, Printed Matter, a non-profit organization dedicated to artist's books, carries This Head/Is/ Is Better/ For Using/Than Losing. Left Handed Saw Right-Handed: A Truncated History of Listening, an experimental play co-written and co-directed with Brian Torrey Scott, was performed at the Chicago Cultural Center and at Links Hall. A Novel in the Form of A Car Bomb", an experimental radio play accompanied by a vehicular orchestra and live chorus, is a work-in-progress recently performed in Brooklyn at Industry City.

Elijah Burger is an artist and writer based in Chicago, IL. He has exhibited his paintings and drawings in various group shows. He recently started a hybrid studio wall/magick diary blog at He also co-founded and co-edited the now-defunct art publication BAT ( He has written reviews and essays for ArtUS and several small art publications in Chicago, as well as contributing writing to catalogs for exhibitions, including Shape-shifters at Alfedena Gallery, IL and Deborah Boardman: The Flux of Matter at the University of Indiana Kokomo Art Gallery. He received an MFA from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago in 2004, and a BA from Sarah Lawrence College in 2000, where he studied Literature, Visual Art, and Cultural Anthropology. He loves early industrial music, William S. Burroughs, and the color red.

Salem Collo-Julin is a writer, artist, & performer who works with Temporary Services & co-owns Half Letter Press. Stalk her at

Cody Critcheloe
My name is Cody Critcheloe and when I'm not on stage I look like total shit. I'm pretty boring and I never leave the house unless I get paid. I would like to thank Kim and Thurston for making me a star. Only they could do it. See you guys in HELL!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

David Robert Elliott
1984 - Born in Kansas City
2007 - BFA, Milwaukee Institute of Art and Design
Currently living and working in Chicago, IL

Cayetano Ferrer is a graduate of the School of the Art Institute of Chicago, where he received his BFA in 2006. Since then he has exhibited his work in Daejeon, Korea, at the Daejon Museum of Art; at ThreeWalls in Chicago, IL; The Silver Shed in New York, NY; and at Lobot in Oakland, CA, where he completed a residency in 2006. After leaving Oakland, he drove across the U.S. and Argentina for a year, engaging with the process of travelling as a series of loosely connected projects that make up the basis for his text in Monsters and Dust. Currently, Ferrer resides in Los Angeles where he is working on a Masters degree at the Roski School of Fine Arts, University of Southern California.

Erin Foley is an artist and educator in Chicago who has been involved in exhibition, curatorial, and fund raising projects for the past 9 years, and is an active board member of Chicago Rarities Orchard Project. She has shown work in group exhibitions in Chicago, Los Angeles and Omaha. Upcoming endeavors include a residency at CANO in New Orleans and a solo show.

Melinda Fries is an artist currently living and working in Chicago. She spent several years in motion; hopping trains, hitchhiking, walking long distances, and moving from city to city. Since 1998 she has been the creator/curator of, an online exploration of ephemeral experiences and collections.

Jess Holl is an editor at National Geographic Adventure magazine where she writes about modern-day explorers, weird science, great animals, and unconventional world travels. She lives in Brooklyn, NY.

Philip Jenks was born in North Carolina and grew up in Morgantown, West Virginia. He got his BA from Reed College, MA in Creative Writing from Boston University, and doctorate from University of Kentucky in Political Science. He has studied under Susan Bordo, Fish, Pinsky, and Walcott. He sings and plays percussion with The Howling Hex, contributing to their upcoming album XI, recently released August 28th on Drag City. He teaches English at University of Illinois at Chicago and Political Science at Lewis University. Flood Editions published his first volume of poems in 2002, On the Cave You Live In, and a second volume of poems, My First Painting will be The Accuser, was released on Zephyr Press (2005). He has published two chapbooks – The Elms Left Elm Street (Plane Bukt, 1994) and How Many of You Are You? (Dusie, 2006). His poems have appeared in Chicago Review, Traverse, GutCult, h_ngm_n, The Canary, The Gig, Monkey Puzzle, LVNG, The Poker, The Oregonian, Rain City Review, Poetry New York, Cultural Society (among others), and he has published translations of Hölderlin in Outlet.

Becca Mann's paintings dichotomize her subjects in the past and present by preserving them with the reverence in which they were photographed; however, with the sense of a contemporary artist, Mann focuses on the imperfections of the physical photograph, resulting in compositions that seem both authentic and wholly unique. Becca Mann is a graduate of The School of the Art Institute of Chicago, where she received a BFA in painting and a BA in critical writing. She is currently represented by Roberts & Tilton in Los Angeles. She lives in Venice, CA .

Simone Muench was raised in Louisiana and Arkansas. She is the author of three books: The Air Lost in Breathing (Marianne Moore Prize for Poetry; Helicon Nine, 2000), Lampblack & Ash (Kathryn A. Morton Prize for Poetry; Sarabande, 2005), and Orange Crush (Sarabande, forthcoming in 2010). Her latest chapbooks are Orange Girl (dancing girl press, 2007) and Sonoluminescence, written with Bill Allegrezza (Dusie Press, 2007). She is a recipient of a 2000 and 2009 Illinois Arts Council Fellowship, the 49th Parallel Award for Poetry, the PSA’s Fine Lines Contest, the Charles Goodnow Award, the AWP Intro Journals Project Award, the Poetry Center’s 9th Annual Juried Reading Award and the PSA’s Bright Lights/Big Verse Contest. She received her Ph.D from the University of Illinois at Chicago, and is director of the Writing Program at Lewis University, where she teaches creative writing and film studies. Currently, she serves on the advisory board for Switchback Books and UniVerse: A United Nations of Poetry, and is an editor for Sharkforum.

Kelly Schei is an artist and writer based in Chicago. She has contributed articles to Popmatters and BAT Journal, exhibited at the Chicago Cultural Center, Art Chicago, Artist Space, and Hyde Park Art center, and worked as an educator for the Guggenheim Museum.

Pilar Elena Tena
Born in Holland, Michigan, January 18, 1983, moving to San Antonio, Texas in 1990. Transferring to the School of the Art Institute of Chicago in 2002 she graduated with her BFA in 2006. Designer, print maker, sculptress, working with a variety of mediums from cake, to jell-o, to steak. In 2007 she began recording vocals for a music project, Love Concept. Since drawing as a youth, she still draws today.......

I don't like doing these this enuff?

True Crime is a group that investigates and interrogates personal relationships to criminal behavior through interviews, installations, performance, and research. We are Melinda Fries and Salem Collo-Julin. Tell us your true crime experience at

Josh Tyson was born and raised in Denver. Once he achieved sexual maturity, he migrated to Chicago, but eventually swam back to Denver to mate for life with his wife, Nicole. Josh enjoys cooking and gardening. He and his son, Elias, spend their weekends making rock lullabies as members of New Age Dad. {}