Adam Moritz


Letters from the Editors

Hello there. I’m Adam. I grew up in Pittsburgh, PA and now live in the East Village. This past week, I started a job at a standard corporate 9-to-5, and after the first few weeks of hours upon hours sitting at my convertible coffee table desk on Zoom trainings, my brain was certifiably fried. Spilling over with policies, corporate standards, and coding best practices, my urge for a creative outlet had never been stronger. Any waking moment outside of work, if I wasn’t actively reading (and sometimes then too), I was plagued with thoughts about writing. I knew that my girlfriend, Anna, was having similar strong desires to write, but with very little external motivation to do so.

So, late one early September night in a half-awake stupor, I found myself searching for something that Anna and I could work on together, but would showcase our own styles and opinions. I came up with the very broad strokes of a zine format in which we could present opinion pieces side-by-side, allowing the reader to compare and contrast the different ways we look at the world. The next morning at Abraço, we fleshed out the details: One issue per season; 5-6 sections per issue, ranging from fiction and philosophy to book and art criticism, each of around 500-1000 words; we would collaboratively come up with the subject of each section, but write in isolation, no sharing; after we had written all of the sections, we would edit each other's pieces; these sections would then be displayed side-by-side in the zine that we would design together. We plan on distributing it generally to our friends and family who express interest—but don't get it twisted, this is for us.

Now onto the name–Decadence. After taking one (1) French art history class in college, I fell in love with the Decadent movement. The pursuit of aesthetics, in the pre-internet sense, captivates me. So much of the world and my personal day-to-day is so analytical–studies, statistics, DATA. It has its place, but I feel that this perspective breaks down in regards to art. To quantify, commodify, and technologize art (cough cough NFTs) strips it of what makes it special–beauty. The followers of the Decadent movement understood this; they embraced art’s irrationality, in all its aesthetic glory. Wikipedia describes the Decadent movement as being characterized by the "an intense self-consciousness, a restless curiosity in research, an over-subtilizing refinement upon refinement, a spiritual and moral perversity," and if that isn't this, I don't know what is. This zine is absolutely a pursuit of indulgence, both in ourselves and in the world. I hope you like it.