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The Thing: Issue 10

Remember how way back in 1991, before it got shined up and sponsored by Louis Vuitton, BMW and Hermès and spun off into two fashion glossies, Visionaire was a cool, collaborative art and design project made by hand and paid for out of pocket? While its creators may have lost some of their original DIY spirit, that energy is alive and well with the folks at The Thing, a curated quarterly in in the form of an everyday object.

“Each year four artists, writers, musicians or filmmakers are invited to create a useful object that somehow incorporates text.” The Thing seems like a natural step for editors Will Rogan and Jonn Herschend, both visual artists whose work tends to focus on “things that are quiet in nature but can be described by a larger idea.” Kind of like issue 10, curated by Starlee Kine, a public radio producer/writer you’ve probably heard on “This American Life.” Her issue centers around a small wooden cutting board for slicing onions with “Crying Instructions” burnt into the wood. Other issues due out later this year will be curated by artists Chris Johanson, Matthew Higgs, fashion designer Doo-Ri Chung and, according to coolhunting.com, actor James Franco. Each issue is assembled by hand at a wrapping party and arrives at your door in a simple brown box, giving away no clues as to what lies inside.

You can see Starlee Kine cut onions and cry live at Housing Works in NY on May 14th, where she will also  sign copies. Bring tissues.