Thursday, September 02, 2004

Someone Moved My Mailart

Just before I get ready to write a few words about the mailart I've received over the past two days, I realized it was missing, moved off the dining room table so that the family could play the game of Life (where I decided to take another man as a spouse). Luckily, I found my stash of art soon enough.

First, Arenella

Yesterday, I received an envelope from Roy Arenella. The letter inside it carried this numeration: 371L+E(PB+C). The 371st item mailed this year: a letter with enclosures (the enclosures being a paperback plus a card?). I'm not quite sure, but that's what I like about it.

Roy includes in the envelope a stylish rubberstamp poem, but one he thinks has no resonance. Still it is a beautifully balanced beauty, though the loonness within it is somehow lost. But this is no failure; this is just a first draft. Visual poetry still allows drafts, and there is some way to make this poem resonate. Roy will just have to find it.

Roy also included a small postcard cut out of the cover of a pulp novel (Alberto Moravia's Roman Tales). The card even carries two stamps (one of Bartholdi, sculptor of the Statue of Liberty), but Roy decided not to mail it to me on its own, fearing it might break apart in the mail. The obverse image and the image of the Statue of Liberty in the stamp join together to echo the text of the card, which discusses my booklet Waking Up at Home, a small examination of how families can memorialize their own history. Roy's response to the book and his description of his own family (microprinted onto the back of this card) are touching.

Roy Arenella, "At the Lake" (22 Aug 2004)

Mark of the Cards

From Mark Lamoureux there arrived today three postcards, which he had told me earlier he'd uncovered at his mother's house. Each card is of an East Coast tourist venue (Atlantic City, Cape May [New Jersey], and Santa's Village [Jefferson, New Hampshire]) and carries upon its back a single punning response to the card's obverse. My favorite is "SEA/NCE," which helps us redefine Atlantic City.

Three Postcards from Mark Lamoureux (31 Aug 2004)

The Man from Conneaut Lake, Pennsylvania

Mick Boyle sends me two cards: one reporting that he has found this website and liked the documentary aspect of it. The cards are nearly identical on the front (just different in color) and quite nicely designed. The backs provide two different views of his friend Tom after he has shaved his head.

Two Postcards from Mick Boyle (31 Aug 2004)

un violon d'ingres


michael said...

Having ones mail art stash removed was a common problem when we lived in a small flat in London. We used to have to carve a channel through the piles of mail and rubber stamps, pads,collage material etc. that used to cover the table which we used for working on and eating off! thankfully now we have moved to a larger house we have seperate rooms for eating and working but the tables still look a mess!

Geof Huth said...


The strange thing about space and my house is that we have an entire floor (the third floor) dedicated to art storage, working, etc., but I rarely work up there now, since it's so far from my family. But it has a big livingroom, a small library, a bedroom and a bathroom, so I could live up there if I wanted to. (The library used to be a kitchen!)