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October 2020: Notes On Another Memory
Semantikon/Three Fools Press was founded in Southwest Ohio in 2003. My aspiration being, to develop a web-based, community media co-operative highlighting Midwest and midwest-affiliated artists, while also helping them, by providing technology, multimedia, and information services to help them make the transition from the brick-and-mortar art world ---to the networked world during a time when the digital divide was rapidly widening. In the 6 years Semantikon/Three Fools Press was active, we produced over 60 original features of visual art, literature and film. We also hosted two regular columnists and, published 9 original e-books under the Three Fools Press imprint. In addition to art features, Semantikon also hosted our own server-based web TV station (via the now defunct Miro Platform), a radio station (Via Live 365), a blog (Hypergraphia) and helped produce 8 community events to support and highlight our featured artists and our operations. In June of 2009, Semantikon/Three Fools Press published its last visual art and literary features, and, in July of 2009, published our last Hypergaphia blog post, a review of Ohio-rooted Magnolia Electric Company, last live show in Austin, Texas. Although the reasons we stopped publishing are numerous and frankly too amorphous to detail here, the initial goals of highlighting Midwest artists while helping them traverse the widest arc of the digital divide was met with praise and considered by some to be, a precocious achievement. Not only in terms of the community we helped develop and support, but also, in terms of technological achievement; semantikon was born and operated before the ubiquity of push-button publishing, smartphones, and social media. Was promoted and maintained without the use of advanced Search Engine Optimization methods nor, advertising sales. Through word of mouth, welcomed an average of some 3,700 visitors a month during its peak and now, some 20 years later, is still something former features list in their CV; no higher praise than that. In my own terms, the success of semantikon, could be best summed up by the following exchange. Q: "What is semantikon is trying to do?" A: Create space where there is none."

In the Winter of 2019, after a series of meetings with former co-op members on what should happen to the website and archives, Semantikon/Three Fools Press worked to form a partnership with curator and archivist Kelly O'Donnell. Kelly's passionate work documenting the Southwest Ohio Arts community over the past 25 years, including many of the folks we worked with, made this an ideal arrangement. At the time of this publication, during the height of COVID-19 pandemic, the entire semantikon website and archives are being collated and organized into her larger archives, with plans to package all of her work and deliver that--to the Cincinnati Art Museum for future generations to enjoy, and we hope, draw inspiration from. To that end, we sent an invitation to all former Ohio-rooted features to write a retrospective essay sharing their experiences with semantikon, the arts community during the time semantikon was active and, their ideas about the state of online publishing then and, today.

For our final feature, enjoy six retrospective essays by artists we featured and supported, organized by their initial feature date on the website. In addition, find a timely reiteration of the cut-up poem, "Quelle Horreur", by our first literary feature, the dearly missed Aralee Strange.

For those who were there from the beginning, we thank you. To those who read and learn about our work in some future time, we thank you for your careful consideration of our story and, and our aspirations to speak for and about, our time.

October 5, 2020

Read the Long Form Semantikon/Three Fools Press Retrospective...

Mark Flanigan Patrick Sebastian Nathan Singer

I haven’t written anything for a while. Which is why having to sit down just now to write for semantikon conjures a familiar feeling...(more)

In the summer of 1975 our family station wagon was on a seemingly endless stretch of Oklahoma highway...(more)

2004 was a watershed year for me. Most of my six published novels are either set in, or double back on, that year...(more)

Exile On Main Street
Feature: Nov. 2003 Feature: April 2004
Feature: Sept 2004 Series: Dorothy and the Snake Handlers Guest Editor: Nov 2006
Exiled From Main Street
open feature
open feature
open feature
Joseph Winterhalter Mick Parsons Fritz Kappler

I first met Lance on an icy November evening in 1998. Nearing 1207 Main St.he and Flanigan appeared through a frosted street side window...(more)

I first met Mark Flanigan at Kaldi's Coffee House on Main Street in OTR; this was before gentrification had fully set in, before the riots in '08. I'd managed, mostly out desperation and the willingness to be...(more) I look back on the Semantikon Project with a wry smile. At the time there wasn't a whole lot of opportunity to share work or dialogue about ideas in an informal way in the electronic...(more)
Visual Art Feature:
MetaNym Sequence
Feature: Jan. 2005 Visual Art Feature: Oct 2006
13833 Manifesto
Feature Oct 2005
Expedition Notes Complete
(March 2006)
A Magic Day Coloring Book (e-Book)
open feature
open feature
open feature
Nick Barrows
I am not sure where to start on this. First and foremost, it should go on record that I have a bad memory. A very bad memory. So it should go without saying that you truly...(more)
Feature: Oct 2007
open feature
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