By John Mather
The bouncers at Andy Poolhall are unprepared for the amassing crowd swelling before them.
Some are regulars, but most are there to support Ryerson’s student-run Image Arts magazine, Function.
It’s 11 p.m. and the line outside the bar stretches down the sidewalk on College Street.Holding the crowd back in the stairwell, the two bouncers scramble to check IDs and keep track of numbers.
Although security was not expecting the 300-person plus turnout last Thursday at the magazine’s first fundraising party of the year, Function’s editorial staff was.
“Lots of people came up and said this is a wicked way to start the year,'” said Che Kothari, one of the magazine’s editors. Oz Jenab and Ryan Paterson, the other two editors and party plotters, knew the event would attract many Image students.
On this night, they hoped to see more support from outside the faculty. Function is an experimental arts magazine produced by Ryerson students in the Image Arts program.
It started as a collaborative project with Graphic Communications Management students to showcase students’ work in photography, film, and new media. But when GCM left the magazine in 2001, there was no longer enough money to print, so an online version was created instead. Kothari said Image Arts students attend the parties to support the magazine and to have a good time.
Those not in Image Arts come because of Function’s “guerilla marketing style,” and for the “great vibe and great party,” he said. Part of this vibe, explained Kothari, comes from the bar itself.
Andy Poolhall is decorated in a fashion Andy Warhol – the iconic ’60s artist after whom the bar is cleverly named – would approve of: Dim lights, red walls and unusual furniture-stuff you won’t find at Ikea.
Adding to the ambiance were Ryerson student DJs The Funky Diabetic, Captain Easychord, and Little King who brought the funk, soul, hip-hop and electro feel-as advertised on Function’s bright-yellow flyers-to the night.
By 11:50 p.m., the bar had reached capacity and a consistent line remained outside until almost 2 a.m., when things finally started to wind down.
“If we did not have to leave, we would have just kept on going,” Kothari said.
The Function team is now working on their next event-a Halloween-themed party on Oct. 28.
“For this one, we’re going to aim to make it a Ryerson-wide event, instead of just Image Arts,” said Kothari.