This Group celebtrates Boring, ordinary, dull, commercial Postcards that feature aspects of our everyday life – such as streets, roads, houses -- and are, in a strange way, interesting because they are so uninteresting. Join in and share your Postcards of our Boring world.

Location: Sigean, France
Members: 72
Latest Activity: 4 hours ago

Discussion Forum


Started by Valentine Mark Herman. Last reply by Valentine Mark Herman Mar 15. 3 Replies

If you have, receive or send any Christmas (and/or New Year/ Holiday/Hannukah/Yuletide/Kwanzaa/Las Posadas, etc) Cards that are Boring, please post them here -- the pictures on the front, the message…Continue


Started by Valentine Mark Herman. Last reply by Valentine Mark Herman Nov 14, 2020. 40 Replies

From time to time we have outbreaks of whether a Postcard is Boring, or not.“Yes it is”. “No it isn''t.”“All Postcards are Boring.” “All Postcards are interesting”.And so on, and so forth.So, LET'S…Continue


Started by Valentine Mark Herman. Last reply by Bradford Sep 25, 2020. 14 Replies

DULL OR BORING?I am a member of the British-based Dull Men's Club (DMC) –…Continue


Started by Valentine Mark Herman. Last reply by Bradford Jul 3, 2020. 5 Replies

i) From Val Hermanii) A room in the House for the Blind, Halluin, (19) France, (sent 18 July, 1975)iii) I think this Postcard is Boring because of it's utter bleakness. There is nothing of interest…Continue

Comment Wall


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Comment by Mary J. Grellner on July 8, 2020 at 8:29pm

This does not tell me how to get started...need advice.


Comment by Valentine Mark Herman on July 8, 2020 at 6:52pm


Generated poster

Comment by Valentine Mark Herman on July 8, 2020 at 6:42pm

Hello Jennifer!

Or shall I call you Jen? Or Jenny?

Do you know the Paul Simon song, 'You can call me Al'?

Some of the lyrics go:

"If you'll be my bodyguard
I can be your long lost pal
I can call you Betty
And Betty, when you call me, you can call me Al"

So, you can call me 'Val' (which i prefer) or 'Valentine', or even 'Al'.

And, if you like, I'll call you 'Betty'.

Now as to the Postal History Boutique -- I hadn't realised it had gone into hibernation. Angie and Snooky seem to have left IUOMA, and that is probably why the Group is no more.

You could re-start it, perhaps....

Comment by Valentine Mark Herman on July 8, 2020 at 6:37pm

Hi Heleen!

Bray is inspirational. As is Mr Tingey.

Thanks for the van Gogh link. His illustrated enevlopes are new to me, and interesting.

I'm not able to add to my Boring postcard collection these days, as all the vide greniers, vlooienmarkten, collector's fares etc have been postponed indefinetly here in France.

But when they re-open, I hope to find lots more...

Comment by Valentine Mark Herman on July 8, 2020 at 6:32pm

Welcome to the Group, Mary J!

How to get started? Go to the very last page (no 27) of the Group, and read the very first piece I posted when I set up the Group. Then look at pages 22-6 to see how it all developed. If you have time, look at the other pages to see how the Group has evolved.

This will give you some idea of how you (and we) define the boringness of a Postcard. (Warning: it's subjective)

My original idea was to collect Boring Postcards from the IUOMA gang, add them to my own collection, and then exhibit a selection of them this summer in 2 exhibitions -- one in the North of Holland, the other in the South of France.

Sadly, both exhibitions were cancelled because of the virus, but I hope that they can be re-scheduled...perhaps in 2021.

In the meantime, the Gang keep sending me Boring Postcards for (and I have just made this up) "The Definitive IUOMA Boring Postcard Collection". If you have any, please send them to me, and I'll add them to the Collection.

And/or send them to other members of the Group, and see what you get back.

Good luck!

Comment by Mary J. Grellner on July 8, 2020 at 5:52pm

I'm ready to mail and receive boring postcards; will someone just tell me how to get started?  Thanks

Comment by Mary J. Grellner on July 8, 2020 at 5:42pm

I would like to participate in Boring do I start?

Comment by Heleen de Vaan on July 8, 2020 at 4:47pm

I think W. Reginald Bray a great mail artist. John Tingey’s book ‘The Englishman who posted himself’ (he did!) gives a wonderful overview of his postal investigations.

Thank you for sharing those great pictures, also the older illustrated envelopes, Val!

By the way, Vincent Van Gogh illustrated his letters. In search of photos I found this website in which the English translations was added: 
(sorry, no boring postcards yet..) 

Comment by Valentine Mark Herman on July 8, 2020 at 11:14am

Thanks Jennifer.

(Take a look at the Postal History Boutique Group, now run by Angie and Snooky, that I started in 2011 that looks at some of these 'historical' questions)

I think that Reginald Bray was the first Mail Artist in the IUOMA sense because he took in 1898 he got a copy of  the official British Post Office Guide and decided how far he could push the rules -- just like many of us do in IUOMA.

But he wasn't the first mail artist? When there was mail but no postal service (ie pre-1840) someone, somewhere, must have illustrated a letter. The first postage stamp and mail I was know it now started in Britain on 1 May, 1840, with the Penny Black stamp. On the same day the Government issued postal stationary letters and sheets, known as Mulready envelopes, that were valid fro 6 May, 1840. They were illustrated as you can see:

They were withdrawn after a few years, by which time envelopes and stamps were the postal norm.

But, of course, people started decorating the envelopes (and postcards). Here is one from 1881, "...depicting two men tricking a Policeman and a Postman into thinking that they are listening to a Phonograph":

And now let's get back to Boring Postcards.

Comment by Valentine Mark Herman on July 7, 2020 at 12:30pm

Hi Katerina!

I'm impressed. Very impressed. First, that you have kept the card for almost 60 years. Second, that you have kindly sent it to me. Third, that you must have had the makings of a mail artist when you were in high school -- you must have been one of the first prota-mail artists, and here you are almost 60 years later*. And last, you seem to have endless collections of mail art and other 'stuff' -- but not ones of US stamps or floppy discs that you have kindly given to me in the past.


* No doubt this will spark off a debate about who was the first ever mail artist, when did mail art begin, etc.  I nominate W. Reginald Bray: see John Tingey's 'The W Reginald Bray Appreciation Society' Group here. (But this is the sort of discussion that could go on and on and on --rather like the one that tries to pin down when 'rock'n'roll was first invented/started/named/played, etc). As to my own humble beginnings as a mail artist,  I have the very first letter that was sent to me by my uncle in 1946 when I was one day old.


Members (72)




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