In our first Secret Mag Club, the one we sent in April, we chose to start with a little bomb for refined palates. From Colombia a piece to be read in small steps, like a well distilled whiskey. 

Yuca it is a theoretical question. A conceptual magazine that is published once a year, with different covers for the same edition taken from its contents. Publishers are directors of an orchestra of artists who pause to give representation (not always meanings) to their idea of the proposed theme.

Yuca was born in Bogota, Colombia, but these are not the physical places that this magazine will make you explore. Edition number 3 is dedicated to two themes: the alibi of sound and the question of time.

The link that connects these two themes is the theme of the editorial presentation of this issue and is thus described in the pages of Lina Rincon and Juliana Gomez: when a sound stops and silence begins, one realizes that something has happened, that time has elapsed, that sound has gone. During an event the awareness of the same is not full, but once this is finished the silence becomes an exemplary moment of the end of the sound event and the beginning of something else, the passing of time is realized. 

This incessant passing of time, alternation of beginning and end, of sound and silence is a human necessity to give order to the chaos that surrounds us. 

yuca magazine


Yuca is not a simple manual, you will have understood it, it is a conceptual magazine that requires attention. 

The opening photographic project is by the Portuguese Edgar Martins. Lasted for 18 months and carried out in Great Britain, it philosophically and ontologically explores the question of absence as a representation of the theme of this issue, sound and time

The true depth of this issue, however, is described in an excellent way by scrolling through all 18 artistic works that are presented. Yes, because Yuca works like this: publishers look for artists, give them the theme and then await their representations and conceptualizations with healthy joy.

And in their works the artists focus on events, objects, customs of everyday life that we feel are ours and intimate, tangible and familiar. Even when they are "lunar".

And so the work Dancing to the Bad Bell recounts moments of absolute subjection to mechanical alarm clocks with photos from the last century. Then there is Anna Phaissa, the artist who runs the bookshop Multiplos in Barcelona, which questions the function of sound and time in the relationship with reading books.

Particularly touching our hearts is A life in forms, light and sublime work of the Peruvian Andrea Canepa, who has collected many forms from bureaucratic offices in the most varied sectors around the world and shows us various patterns that he was able to reconstruct in his personal photo gallery. Canepa indicates how globalized bureaucracy involves the establishment of unwritten rules and laws that go beyond borders and that limit and condition human action. In her work she presents the models she collected clean of all data, highlighting even more the essence of the human being in the globalized world as a mere "statistical datum".

Two interviews in this issue, one with a woman and one with a man. HER is the title of the interview with Suzanne Ciani who in the 70s was one of the few women to deal with electronic music. HIM is instead the interview with David Spergel, director of the Center for Computational Astrophysics in New York, who has the arduous task of talking about science in a magazine that gives voice primarily to art. It does so by dealing in a colloquial way with issues that to mere mortals seem science fiction, or exoplanets: is there life in planets outside the solar system? What is the future of humanity? 

The rest of the projects flow between Iran and astrophysics, dystopia, the disillusionment of adults and the hopes of millennials.

Yuca has thick, matte paper pages, is as tall as your thumb (if you have a thick thumb), and his paper smells like gentle ink. 

If you missed it in the Secret Mag Club April (of course, you could not know what there would be!) you can always find it here.

Enjoy the reading!


April 27, 2019 — Dario Gaspari

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