Monday, July 11, 2016

Makings With Central European Trash

When I went to China I was just getting started sending mail-art. Thankfully I picked up a bunch of items from newsstands and from the trash to make a nice set of cards. They came out pretty well, not great, just ok. On my recent trip to Central Europe the mail-art obsession had solidified. One of my major outings in Hungary was about mail-art. The whole time I was picking up bits of paper, sometimes thinking about how I could use it later. I didn’t actually buy anything I just took back trash. As soon as I got back I made a load of cards from what I had smuggled out. One of my trip companions collected things for me as well and left the pile on my work desk a couple weeks ago. These three images are (mostly what she gave me) out of the items she left me. I’m going to give one to her as well as a couple other folks that went on the trip. The cat one is my favorite.

Saturday, July 2, 2016

The Mail Art Room

The Entrance
For the first year all of my trashy collages were made on this little table that I put in front of my chair. Once that broke I moved over to the cheap Ikea coffee table. That’s where I did almost everything for another few years. I kept all of the supplies in the backroom, taking them back and forth whenever I need them. A year later I had added a table in that backroom where I had something going pretty much constantly. Doing this really kicked up my productivity. I’d still drag stuff out to the living room for long sessions in front of the TV.
The Archive Closet
While Misty and I were looking for a house, one of the things I wanted was a space…a space that was just mine. I wanted to have everything ready to go whenever I went in there. I kept all of this in mind as we went from house to house. Some of them had garages which would have been perfect, others had converted attics or just strangely shaped rooms off to the side. It wasn’t a deal breaker if the house didn’t have such a space but it was an added incentive if it did.
Desk 1
When we first saw the house we ended up buying, I was excited about all the potential the long attic and perfect attic had. It helped that there wasn’t a toilet up there or proper air-conditioning, which meant Misty wasn’t going to use it at all. From the start it was assumed that the space would be mine and mine alone. I chose the back half for the studio, the front half closest to the steps became the library both for books and for movies.
Desk 2
Putting it together happened in small steps. I never went in there and worked for hours on end. I’d go up there and do a little bit and then leave. Getting together the yard and the living room seemed like a better use of my time so the attic was left alone, sort of.
All of the shit up there I carried myself. Friends helped to get it in the house and then I took up the tall steps. I never realized just how much random mail-art shit I had accrued. The amount of old magazines was staggering, ditto the random envelopes and high school annuals. (I’m going to do something with the last one). Slowly but surely it came together. The two tables I bought constitutes the largest amount of surface area I’ve ever had. I put all sorts of random artwork and found things on the walls and tried to organize the bits of paper into some sort of decipherable pattern. It came out exactly like I wanted it to. Now I have to find some time to get in there and make some things.
Collage Paper

Thoughts on the Summer Makings Process

I’ve been productive this summer. Normally I wake up around eight o’clock and put on the coffee. I watch twenty minutes of online videos,...