What I’m doing on my summer vacation, part 1…
July 7, 2010 by redletterdayzine
Hello beautiful postal people!
The July 4th holiday has come and gone, and what do I have to show for it? A pile of completed work! I’ve been busy over here at the RLD HQ; it seems like the months of July and August are hustling and bustling by. There’s always alot of talk at this time of year about things like vacation and taking it easy; somehow or other, I managed to be out of the room when that conversation was taking place.
So what’s been up? Well, I’ve been hard at work on a project entitled “So Many Products, So Little Time: The Junk Mail Show”, which is opening in San Francisco this week (scroll down to the bottom for show info). The theme of the show is — wait for it! — junk mail. How brilliant is that?! Curators Sarah Smith and Andy Vogt are definitely My Kind Of People.
Tell me if this sounds familiar: every teeny tiny scrap of paper at your house gets saved, especially if it has some sort of unusal texture or printed design. You just can’t bear to part with a single piece of ephemera: coffee filters (unused. you gotta draw the line somewhere), candy wrappers, birthday cards, cake mix boxes…it’s all just raw material to create mail art. I understand completely, because your plight is my plight. In this age of shredding all incoming credit card offers and auto insurance fliers, I spend alot of time separating the wheat (security envelopes with cool inside lining patterns) from the chaff (all that other crap that comes inside the envelope), and have acquired quite a collection. So when I was invited to join in on the junk mail fun, gathering together my tools of action was not really a problem.
Once I had created my envelope-covered 5×7 panels, it was time to begin gocco printing! Armed with photocopies of 1920’s and 30’s junk mail slogans (“Growing!”, “My Secret”, and “SENSATIONAL!” to name just a few) as well as a fistful of screens, I began to print. Flourescent ink over the top of those security tints is pretty exciting, dont’cha think?
Gotta let the gocco ink dry, but that’s o.k. I’ll make some fauxstage to attach to each panel. I think it should tie in with the theme of the show…
Laid out on the table, the riot of color and texture on all 16 panels is a sight to behold. Looking at the panels as a group made me realize how much junk mail comes from specific types of companies, primarily credit card and insurance dealers of some kind. It was also liberating to realize I’ll never have a shortage of junk mail/security envelopes, and that, by extension, I’ll never have a lack in the “materials” department (as far as a project like this is concerned). I have a feeling that this group of 16 is the first of many such prints/panels…
If you’re in the bay area and interested in coming to see the show, here’s the info. Each of the panels that you see in the above photos is for sale; additional mail art will be created specifically for each purchaser on the back of sold panels. Once the show comes down, panels will be mailed to purchasers, thereby creating mail art out of junk mail! If you are unable to make it to the show or opening but want to see more, let me know — I’m sure we can work out a solution!
And it might interest you to know: the SF Weekly had a bundle of nice things to say in today’s (July 7th) edition of the paper. All that being said (written?), I hope to see all of YOU, my postal loving, junk mail hoarding friends, on Friday night!
In all things postal, I remain —