Passive Aggressive Mail Art

One of the successes of mail art was figuring out how to subvert the curatorial process. Mail art was a smart ass and mischievous bastard and that’s why I love it so much. As a punk rock kid it taps into so many things I love. My initial interest was because of this rebelliousness. Now that I’ve been involved in making and sending and receiving for so many years, I want to branch out. Here the problems start to appear.
So I’ve got this whole mail-art project using the visage of a friend going. This image could be replaced with a number of different things. Mail-artists take this image and create something new, that’s what they do, and that’s what they’ve done for years. Although I’m posting all of these images online for the past few weeks, the only people that see them are the people that flip through Facebook at that exact time. So much of the great work has gone unnoticed, which a shame is considering the quality of the responses I’ve received. I want more people to see them. I want more people to have fun with the image and learn more about this mail-art thing. Maybe I want Winston to learn a little more about this whole thing? Here’s the problem, where do I show these to a larger grouping of people in a different context? Now I’m entering into the realm of the curatorial process, which I was never meant to do.
None of my friends (close friends, people I go on vacation with, and drink with) or very few of my close friends, make art that isn’t music. I kind of get the music thing, it makes sense, I’ve been privy to a lot of conversations about whole that whole monster works. I do mail art; I don’t know how art works. I didn’t draw as a kid. I never had an art class either in history or composition. There’s a wall.
To put it out there that I have all of these things, enough for a show (could get bigger…might get much bigger) I’ve decided to start sending mail art (like the one above) to a few galleries around our medium sized town. I call it passive aggressive mail-art. I’m going to start with one space, see if I get any sort of response, and then move on to the next one. This could take weeks, or months. Whoever seems to have an interest in the idea is the place I’ll go with. I don’t expect much of a response considering how jokey the whole endeavor is often perceived, or how many may view mail-art in the great scheme of important art movements. I could imagine attempting to explain the whole thing to one of these “art people” without much luck. I don’t imagine “art people” smile. I don’t know anything about “art people.”
Anyway, here’s the first card, I have the second one ready to go.


Anonymous said…
Sounds like a plan.
zzzzzzzz said…
I've lined up three or four more things to go out. If I do not get a response I'm going to ask the NETWORK to send cards to them.