Guys, I fell off the wagon. For months. But last night I got out my postcards and stamps and my favorite pen and wrote a bunch of postcards for some of the moms in my life and it felt so good! I was like, oh right. I like this.
I have been pulled in so many directions this year that snail mail felt like an extension of “kin keeping,” those obligatory tasks that are often taken on by women in order to maintain relationships. I just did not have the bandwidth to reach out with mail. And my art practice has been more focused on drawing lately so I wasn’t even thinking about snail mail as art so much. But.
I’m going to try to climb back on the snail mail wagon. Also, how gorgeous is that The Quilts of Gee’s Bend postcard? Wagons, paper mail, and quilts? What is this, 1917?
Viva Snail Mail lives! We were hacked and had to be rebuilt but thanks to tech savvy, ceramic artist Nathan Gwirtz, we are back. Phew.
So some film-makers in England are making a short film called Eduardo Munez and they need a lot of handwritten, interesting letters to use as props. The mysterious main character receives a lot of mail. Want to make some mail for a movie? A movie about mail? Here are all the details you will need to send mail to Eduardo Munez.
Viva Snail Mail!
Viva Snail Mail is now on Instagram! One of these days I’ll get a lil Instagram button for this home page but for now, consider following @vivasnailmail to see photos of the art and craft of paper correspondence.
Viva Snail Mail! Viva mailbox embellishment!
I love when I discover a new stamp by actually receiving it in the mail! A holiday card from my dear comrades at Hootenanny Art House was adorned with this fantastic, elongated ( I mean, he was 7’1″) Wilt Chamberlain stamp.
Did you know I play basketball? Did you know a podiatrist just recommended that I give it up? Oh well. Wilt would probably tell me otherwise.
Viva Snail Mail + Basketball!
The Crossing Brooklyn show at the Brooklyn Museum is worth a visit. One of my favorites is Paul Ramirez Jonas‘ The Commons. The piece conjures the kind of historic bronze statue you might see in a town square but the horse has no war hero in its saddle and the whole statue is covered in cork board. Visitors are encouraged to pin things up. Pin something up? Don’t mind if I do.
Jonas combines two things associated with public space; static, war memorializing monuments and active, interactive community bulletin boards. His piece stirred up thoughts about the past and the future of “The Commons” and the potential of non digital social networks that exist in real, shared time and real, shared space. I loved it.
Plus while I was visiting the exhibit I saw one of my former pre-school art students on a class field trip and got to watch as he exclaimed, “My tooth fell out!” His teacher took his picture to mark the occasion of losing his first tooth. Pretty fantastic and memorable location for such a rite of passage.
These days I would not wish President Obama’s job on anyone, including President Obama. What an intense and awful summer it has been for the guy. Ukraine, Gaza, Iraq, Furguson, MO, Washington, DC. Oy vey. That’s why I found it particularly sweet when 2 participants in one of my summer Make Mail! workshops made beautiful and elaborate letter collages for the President. While we know that Obama has a committed paper correspondence practice and excellent handwriting, he did not personally write back this time. However a package from the White House with photos of the First Family was still a thrill to receive. Viva Snail Mail!
Did you miss me? We went to Italy. And then my husband had surgery. And its summer vacation. I fell off the VSM wagon! But I am hoping that, despite my disappearance, you have been having a fantastic summer. Viva Snail Mail!
Valentine making season has been so much fun! I co-hosted a valentine making event at my son’s school, hosted Make Mail! workshops for kids, had a craft night with friends, made valentine-y pictures with my art students, made a bunch on my own, and assisted my kids in making valentines for their classmates. Whew!
Hope its been fun for you too. Happy Valentine’s Day to you, dear readers.
Next week marks the very rare alignment of 2 holidays, Thanksgiving and Hanukkah. So Happy Thanksgivukkah! In the past I have used Thanksgiving as an opportunity to host a Thanks Postcard Art Workshop, where participants make and send mail to express gratitude. And then on to Christmas and Hanukkah mail making events in December. But not this year. This Sunday I will be participating in a Hanukkah art festival at Hannah Senesh Community Day School, and perhaps the Hanukkah cards that we make will be infused with both light and thanks.
If you’re local, please come! I’ll have lots of fun card making supplies, blue envelopes, and Hanukkah postage stamps. Happy Thanksgivukkah!
This past weekend Greenpoint Hand Skills and Viva Snail Mail! co-hosted Johnny Cash Forever, a mail making workshop inspired by the 2013 Johnny Cash postage stamps. Participants were invited to make a card inspired by Cash’s lyrics, write a letter to a favorite Johnny Cash fan, or simply send a missive to a like minded friend. Craft supplies, black envelopes, and postage stamps were provided.
One woman made a card for her college age son and planned to include some Johnny Cash cash in the envelope. Smart phones made excellent devices for retrieving lyrics and the black envelopes looked great with white pencil and metallic sharpies.
This guy just happened to be walking by and saw the sign. He felt compelled to come in and make mail since he was wearing a Johnny Cash t-shirt.
So go buy Johnny Cash stamps and send mail to the Johnny Cash fans in your life. Or better yet, buy them a sheet of stamps as a gift.
Johnny Cash Forever!