May 16th, 2002

pinhole camera

Rosetta Stone

Advisor questions: "What is the relation between the Body of Mail Art and the Community of Mail Artists?"

Honoria answers: Each mail artist is her own Rosetta stone using her participation to decipher the network. Even if scholars and other participants write studies and histories of the mail art network, mail artists themselves understand the whole network through the shifting and responsive contents that flow through their own mail boxes. So every mail artist has a different body of mail art.

The Internet made it much easier to find mail artists' personal narratives that used to be distributed only in small zines with limited circulation. An Internet search for mail art will find some artist's personal narratives in writing, but the Internet has also encouraged more posting of pictures. It is a more natural medium for many mail artists to make artworks than it is to write, so the graphic environment of the Internet is attractive to mail artists. The zines were usually xeroxed in black and white. Because of their capacity to publish images was limited to grainy greyscale illustrations the zines tended to feature interviews with mail artists together with contact addresses. If a zine reader wanted to continue a discussion with the artist in the zine you sent your own art or letters directly to the artist; then you received original art from the artist in the zine. The conversations in the zines and the rich physical information in the mail box were each mail artist's clues to the nature of the whole network.
  • Current Mood
    recumbent recumbent
pinhole camera

(no subject)

Early this morning my mail box was buzzing with thoughts from two correspondents, Rain Rien and Bill Wilson and suddenly my mystery structure shifted to an epistolary (duh) structure which of course, is more appropriate but may not be as purple. I can start off the same way, with Merlin's warning then I can sift through my q & a data collection with a mail sorter in my mind. I don't know why I'm having such a time coming up with a grand scheme for this chapter. It's not writing itself yet, but today's influx of new mails helps me to see ways to portray the emails and the enveloped mails with their questionnaire answers as an evolving series of responses to my outgoing mails. Having Rain Rien making art and selling it on ebay in response to the research is really exciting and appropriate in the contexts. The mystery scheme seems more forced.
That's the thoughts for this eve.
  • Current Mood
    working working