Tuesday, November 17, 2009

My Deep and Undying Affection for Postcards...

I. Love. Postcards.

I love them. I love sending them, I love receiving them... and there are many, many reasons for my deep affection.

I started sending postcards regularly the first winter I lived in Philadelphia. It started, jokingly, as a way to keep from sending drunk text messages. Instead of getting an incoherent text in the middle of the night, wouldn't a totally illegible postcard be better?! The diagrams alone made them worthwhile... Slowly, I established a pretty good group of postcard pen pals. My summer travels afford me the opportunity to grow those ranks and to start a solid collection of my own...

(One card away from 50! Thanks to everyone who sent me cards!)

So amazing! And all the while, being the good little artist that I am, I was thinking about why I was so enamored with postcards... what about them was so enchanting? I think there's something so... lovingly ambiguous about them. They exist in this hilarious space between public and private- written for one person but open to the world. (Especially postal workers. I keep meaning to ask a postal worker if they read people's postcards...) They are also sort of outdated. We live in a technological era; one of email and text messages and facebook comments.

I was at Haystack when I knit my first postcard. And then I became obsessed.

(Artist Statement:) "The era of love letters has passed. We used to deliberate over affectionate and expressive letters, page after page filled with handwritten expressions of our emotion. But the days of receiving an actual letter, carried to our homes in the hands of a local postal worker are almost completely gone. Today we send text messages- embarrassingly misspelled words in abbreviated sentences- and we think they can successfully communicate complicated emotions.

This series of hand-knit postcards explores the nostalgic nature of mail and the contradiction of the material object with the ambiguous texts they display. The phrases, although easily recognizable as something you might see on a postcard, indicate a slight longing or desperation in a writer who might be veiling their feelings through pithy rhetoric. In the same way that post cards and letters are something of the past, hand knit objects imply a similar sense of tactile nostalgia and emotional devotion. The fact that the post cards were each knit by hand, laboriously stitched to read these words, exposes the writer’s/knitter’s intensity all the while being contradicted by the brevity of the words and the truncated sentiments. "

The objects are hilariously fun.. but, although I haven't tested one out, I have my doubts that the USPS would deliver them... But to deny them the chance to be sent through the mail would be terrible, right? And so...

I had them made into paper postcards.

(oooh, sexy rounded corners!)

Sets of all 6 postcards will for sale at the rapidly upcoming Renegade Craft Show in Chicago! (And then on my etsy account.) Very Exciting.

I'm making more and more stuff for the fair everyday, so all of y'all who live in Chicago, you best be putting that date on your calendars so you can stop by and give me your moneys. I'll trade you amazing things like recycled canvas dropcloth grocery bags and other stuff! And I'm sharing a table with two astounding artists: Lucy Knisley and Nelly Kurz! Come by and say hi!

(I totally stole this AMAZING comic from Lucy's livejournal, so now you all have to go read her super awesome comics! Also, you have no idea how excited I was to be cartoon-ized!!)

1 comment:

anderin said...