The word ''slow'' is in many instances adjudged a very disadvantageous term, often equated to people and things that are time-consuming, obtuse, reluctant, unprogressive and dull. Yet recent years have seen the advocation for and advancement of a Slow Movement, a cultural shift that embraces a belief in slow living, food, travel and journalism, among other genres. In this sense, slow is measured and deliberate, contextual, relevant and valuable. There is no beating others to the punch; rather slow is about the investment and involvement in something of merit.
Founded in 2013 by Jesse Lenz and Seth Putnam, The Collective Quarterly is a a real-life and documentary-style travel magazine that illustrates the strength of slow journalism. With that said, the travel magazine characterisation is a narrow one as The Collective Quarterly is more a well-judged periodical that encompasses slow travel journalism, an artist in residency programme, design, craft and e-commerce. It is about the creative process, whereby travel is the originator of a creative spark.
Each issue journeys with a select cohort of craftspeople to a predestined and somewhat unconventional location. It is about travel off the beaten track to hidden locales that are beautiful in their authenticity and realness combined with those people galvanised to make things. Artists and craftspeople have a week-long creative residency in the magazine’s chosen area, after which they return to their studios to design and craft products inspired by the trip. Coverage of the destination in question is comprehensive and thorough, with in-depth insights into the history, people and places. Moreover, there are suggestions on what to do, where to eat and sleep. With a labour-intensive approach, every issue of The Collective Quarterly is produced over several months.
The inaugural issue (Ø) of The Collective Quarterly explored Marfa, a small town in Texas. The current edition (1) is the Absaroka issue (a name meaning ''children of the large-beaked bird'') which explores the railroad town and vicinity of Livingstone in southwest Montana. Located North of Yellowstone National Park, Livingstone is situated in an area dominated by the Absaroka Mountains. It is a region that once considered becoming its own state and a place where people, including a number of celebrities, go to hide and where ''writers, fly fishermen, hunters, and introverts… just need to get away.'' With a storytelling narrative, and through photography that is visual and dramatic and writing that is intelligent and observational, we are introduced to a “rough and tumble” township. We meet Eduardo Garcia, a culinary boy scout, Kristina Angelozzi, a Baltimore designer and seamstress and Peacock, a veteran, writer and explorer (he follows the movements of grizzly bears). We also have the opportunity to enjoy an excursion in the Rocky Mountains at Glacier National Park and a look at ''Elk Dogs'' on the Blackfeet Indian Reservation in Montana.