Do you prefer to receive mail art that is original (such as an original drawing or collaged piece of mail art) or are you okay with receiving printed or reproduced mail art? Is there a mail art etiquette regarding this or does anything go? Mail art calls don't seem to specify one way or another and when people send me things, they seem as often as not to be prints/reproductions rather than originals. I could send out a lot more mail to a lot more people if I sent reproductions of some of the artwork I've done, but I don't know if that goes against the idea of mail-art. Should each piece be an original? I was thinking so, but I am now uncertain. So, I am curious about what the mail artists here tend to do.
Your opinions would be appreciated!
Anything goes, I do both original & repos.
By sending out reproductions you can share with a larger group of people.
Reproductions can be altered to make each one unique.
I find this an interesting question and will watch comments - Personally I have always made each piece an "original" - I do photo copy old photographs for my own use, but even if I make multiples of an idea I do stamp, cut , paste etc each piece individually. Lately I have been thinking about copying some of my collage pieces because once a piece is used it is gone forever and it is hard to let go.
Thank you, Cynthia. This is an interesting topic.
There are artists who create work specifically to be sent through the mail and there are artists who send examples (reproductions) of their work through the mail, which, I guess, somehow becomes "mail art" through the act of sending it.
It certainly is likely that one could do both.
I have never made a piece specifically to be "mail art". My work, for the most part, is reproduced commercially (in post card form) and that's what I send. Also, for what it's worth, I tend to send pieces without being asked or requested to do so. I just send 'em. It's sort of a guerrilla approach.
In my eariIy days of "mail art", I sent images that I printed, myself. These were not "unique" images, but they were "originals" in that each was printed and signed by me. However, I found that my printing costs were considerable as I was in the habit of printing two seperate card stock images and gluing them together, back-to-back. Several years ago, I was introduced to a commercial printing company that offered good color reproduction at low cost, and I've made use of their services without (personal) regret.
Although I am not a collage artist, I have been fortunate to receive many examples of collage images sent by mail artists worldwide, and I have never, to the best of my memory, received anything other than a "unique" piece. I am certainly respectful of this, owing to the time and dedication required to complete each piece, although, frankly, I would not cherish the image less if it had been reproduced.
Interestingly, although I don't think mail artists, regardless of their chosen media or method, send work with the expectation of having it scanned or photographed to be included in some internet format, I have observed that most of my work that has been made "electronically" available by recipients have done so with "originals" rather than commercially reproduced versions.
This is very interesting subject.
I have received some awesome art done by computer, fotoshop and advanced techniques or creation and printing ! The skill and beauty, for me, makes such work very welcome. And I am left wishing I could do work like that.
I do love the idea that people might make a little unique pencil mark or paint, ink etc on such pieces make each unique.
In fact, I beleive each piece is unique anyway because of creases, marks and stuff that happens in transition / transit -- even before it leaves your studio / kitchen table !
'The paper carries its history',
I love that quote !!! :)
The first piece I received from this group was a postcard of the artist's work. I loved it ... Photograhphy is art too!! my feeling is if you made it and want to send it do so! It will be appreciated (ps checked out your work and it is awesome!!)
I agree with you and with Helder Coelho Dias....."it must have handmade artistic elements, like collage, drawing, painting etc. "