9 October 2010

Shocking quote!!

I just read a shocking statement on Mail Art on page 71!...

"The Golden Age of correspondence art is behind our backs. The wave of unbridled creativity brought about by the first intensive exploration of the different postal formats and constitutive elements (postage stamps, rubber stamps, postcards, envelopes) has reached a peak in the late Seventies and early Eighties, then mail art mostly repeated itself with diminishing freshness. If you want to find new imaginative postcards today, you should look in the field of graphic design (e.g. the anthology Postcard) rather than in mail art publications. Trough habit and repetition, the original mail art concepts and ideas have been spread too thin, and there is a noticable lack of new ideas, recruits and ambitious schemes in the field. What can you do with a bunch of trading cards, apart from collecting them in an album?."

Shocking! What to do when you have missed the 70's-80's Peak because you where listening to music instead of mail arting, or simply because you might have walked around as a toddler those days... Do the younger and the inbetween-generations repeat the old guard or does the old guard repeat themselves, not seeing the new developments?

Shocking! Prefering graphic design (commerce!) above the good old - be it repetitive or not - cheap paper cut stamp stick draw paint trash postal objects...

Shocking! A Mail Artist who does not know what to do with a bunch of ATC's???
Build huge card houses! Wallpaper your neighbour's house with those! Cut them into faux postage! Send one forward to ME!
(and what's wrong with collecting small sized cards in an album?.. I wish people would send ME such small sized postal objects instead of those larger-than-A4 envelopes, with which we cannot build card houses and which do not fit in my ring binder albums...)

Conclusion: I LOVE the writer of this statement (I mean it!) and I would be delighted to receive just an ordinary mail art snail mail card from him!

P.S.1. Before scolding on the text above, you should read the whole article. It is worth reading!
And then you understand my huge admiration for the article's author! And then you will agree! ("p  (how the #&%  do I create a smiley on this blog??)
Cross-over rules!

P.S.2. There was life after Sonic Youth (that is: Nirvana, irl).
There was life after U2's Boy (October), there was life after the Cure's Three Imaginary Boys (A Forest / Seventeen Seconds - reviled by the early Cure fans).
Sonic Youth survived Nirvana.
U2's still alive.
I love music.
And Mail Art.

I don't want to collect ATC's.
I never listened to the Joshua Tree neither to Rattle and Hum.
The last record I bought from one of the formentioned was Daydream Nation.
Zen Arcade is older than Daydream Nation and sounds newer (er, faster)!
Now it's your turn to steal a new blog from this blog.

Changes in Mail Art

Everyone involved in mail art should read the article 'Ch-ch-ch-ch-change (and Face the Strange) in Mail Art', by Vittore Baroni, starting on page 68 of the Mail Art 1988-2008 Overview book! Also should do the ones with their heads full of nostalgia who forget to look forward. And the people who always want the newest gadgets and forget to look backward.

(And no, I am not Vittore Baroni and No, I did not write or edit the book and do Not work for Lulu). (Yes I'm a young-old person, something 'between generations' or something like that... somehow in crisis??)

7 October 2010

Shock and awe

I was reading an article the other day, reminiscing about the '90's and I thought, 'are we there already?'

It seems as though looking back has become our new way of looking forward.  Except these days, we're not looking that far back are we?  I guess it's all to do with the new Pop Culture paradigm that we're all so fond of.  It's the easiest mark to judge against.  Your knowledge of Pop Culture is your cool factor.

It always has been though.  Who you like in bands, books, films, TV etc; that's who you are as a person in the eyes of others.  Sure, it may not be fair but we all do it.  Even if we say on the outside that we don't, on the inside?  Yeah, we all know we do it. 

This article was referencing Nirvana - of course - and comparing them to the last great Youth explosion.  As with most writers talking about this sort of thing (and it's something the writer admitted himself) everyone uses the 'it'll never happen again' thing as more a reference to themselves.  It'll never happen again FOR THEM.  Something I totally agree with.  But then he went on to say that, he truly didn't think something like Nirvana could happen again because, with the Internet, nothing is really hidden anymore.  Even if you purposely don't have a website, or Myspace page, or Facebook, you can still be filmed by someone with a camera and go up on YouTube.  You might not be seen instantly but, the fact that you're there, makes keeping a secret of a good thing that much harder.

But I don't necessarily think of this as a bad thing.  I think it will be subverted somehow; things like this always are.  There will be another Nirvana again and it will happen in my lifetime.  I don't know how but I know it will happen. 

One thing I do know though - it won't be me.