WATN Rosie Prata

Rosie Prata: Editor-in-Chief, Volume V (2008-2009)

Rosie Prata is currently living in London, England, working full-time as Associate Editor for Monocle magazine, which publishes content covering global affairs, business, culture, and design. In addition to its magazine, which is published 10 times a year, Monocle also runs shops and cafés around the world, hosts an annual conference, has a 24-hour radio station, and publishes books, travel guides, and an electronic newsletter. Prata also writes and copy edits for Winkreative Monocle’s in-house branding agency, which works with clients all over the world in addition to working as a freelance writer for newspapers and magazines and an editor for galleries and museums across North America and Europe.

Originally born in England, Prata moved to Ontario as a teenager with her family, and after completing her undergraduate degree at Concordia University in 2009 with a major in Art History and a minor in English Literature, she moved to Toronto where she volunteered and worked at a number of galleries. While embedded in gallery work, Prata remained persistent in searching for opportunities to write: she volunteered to write press releases, edit artist statements, and so on. It was during this time that she also started an online art talk show with friends from Concordia based in Toronto called Late Night in the Bedroom, where she was a writer and at times a host. “We did that for about a year, and it was amazing. We hosted the show in a different gallery every month and invited people from various backgrounds to come together and be interviewed. We’d have a live band and bring in actors/comedians/magazine editors/artists/dancers/etc.[…] Our final show was in an old underground cinema with red velvet seats and 600 people showed up. Yamantaka Sonic Titan played!”

After Late Night in the Bedroom, she worked as a gallery associate at Bau-Xi Photo for two years where she learned about photography, as well as framing, art fairs, and the commercial art world. Prata then worked part-time at Clint Roenisch Gallery, and at events for Vice, among other positions. “Then I got hired as a copy editor at Canadian Art. That was all thanks to CUJAH.” During her four years at Canadian Art she first worked as a Copy Editor, and then took on the position of Managing Editor.

“CUJAH was a formative experience for me and directly influenced my career trajectory. I’ve always loved language and words, and while working at CUJAH I found my calling – like, this is what I am supposed to be doing! I’m glad that I experienced other jobs before coming back to writing and editing, because all experiences shape who you become. But I can trace a direct line from CUJAH to where I am now, and I’m forever grateful for the community of women I worked with (in particular Dr. Loren Lerner) and the friends I made while working on the journal.

One of the first essays I edited was by Fiona Duncan, who I now count as a close friend, and when I became managing editor at Canadian Art I commissioned her to write articles for the magazine.”

While at Concordia, she became involved with CUJAH during her first year after seeing a poster in the EV building. She joined as a Copy Editor for volumes II and III, was Assistant Editor for volume IV, and Editor-in-Chief for volume V. As Editor-In-Chief, she took on the initiative to publish the journal online for the first time, as well as to create an exhibition review section in addition to the essays. At the time, CUJAH was the only undergraduate journal of art history in North America, and when asked about her opinion on the place of student-run journals she said:

“I think they’re fantastic resources for students, and also effective as publications of record – it’s wonderful to see people grow in their careers as art historians, editors, or writers and to be able to trace their paths back to the first paper they ever published in a university journal. For me, it was an excellent way to meet lifelong friends in the community and to get real-life experience putting together a publication before I’d even graduated – that gave me a real advantage when I was applying for jobs later on.”

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