This envelope of goodies came from Billy Haddock. Just received it on April 5. I corresponded with him for the first time after Ed Geicek passed along Eerie Billy's card / address to me. As a new mail artist I am just starting to scratch the surface with respect to learning about the "legends" of this art form, and I am thrilled to have received something from this legend. Love his work - like, "THE MAD HADDOCK ...AT YER CERVIX!" Interesting rubber stamp images too! Haha!

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Comment by De Villo Sloan on April 10, 2018 at 5:21am

Jayne, you're in the right place.

I would suggest you have a look at Ruud Janssen's interviews with mail artists. (Ruud is the IUOMA founder I'm sure you know.) He has done extensive interviews with just about everyone including Ray Johnson.

You can learn a lot from the interviews. Many are online,

But I'm not sure if he interviewed Haddock.

People hold Richard C in such esteem because he was actually a member of the NY Correspondance School. I think there are a few others here.

Comment by Jayne Barket Lyons on April 10, 2018 at 3:25am

I really appreciate your insight, De Villo. The history is so fascinating to me, and I will continue to read up on it. But - I will enjoy the here and now - the process and folks I correspond with. I’ll be sending something your way soon, my friend!  (BTW - You mentioned Amy Irwen in another comment. I just realized last week that we live 10-12 miles from each other. We are going to meet for coffee sometime in the future).

Comment by De Villo Sloan on April 10, 2018 at 2:32am

Jayne, mail art (as we know it via Ray Johnson) has been going on for over 50 years. So you have historical phases.

There has always been an avant connection. Fluxus and m-a are intertwined. It's hard to beat the days when Yoko Ono might respond to your mail, though.

I've heard people say Neoism is more interesting now than when it was happening.

My point is: Just dig in and follow your inclinations and interests. It will be years before we understand what's happening at this moment.

I'm only now understanding what happened culturally in the 80s (a big decade for m-a). It seemed like a wasteland at the time. Everyone felt cheated because they missed the 60s. (Except Richard C who was big in the 50s or something ;)

Comment by Jayne Barket Lyons on April 10, 2018 at 12:25am

De Villo - Man, it would have been neat to be involved back then, with the trend-setters and rebels. I guess one can say they “pushed the envelope” with respect to bringing about social change and freedom of expression. As a new mail artist I am enjoying the “old school” stuff.

No, I did not ask for historical stuff. He just sent it my way.

Comment by De Villo Sloan on April 9, 2018 at 3:14pm

Also - this is real "Old School" stuff that reflects when the network was truly "underground" and primarily male. (It's primarily female & bourgeois now). We've had some instances where IUOMA newbies freaked out when they received stuff like this.

The Ray Johnson folks - like Richard - are actually more benign than their rebellious offspring.

I've always associated Haddock w/ Neoism that was on the fringe of the fringe, but that might not actually be the case. The Neoists had a group called "The 13 Secret Masters of the World," but I don't think Haddock was one.

Did you specifically ask for historical stuff or something?

Comment by De Villo Sloan on April 9, 2018 at 3:44am

Yes, Eerie Billy Haddock or Wild Billy Haddock is a true mail art legend going back to the days of Ray Johnson and Neoism. (Eclipsed by Richard C of course.) I don't know him but I've seen his work since the age of zines in the 80s.

Supposedly he invented the Tacky Little Pamphlet (TLP). I think Amy Irwen trades with him a lot.

Comment by Jayne Barket Lyons on April 9, 2018 at 2:49am

I forgot to mention that an Add & Pass - initiated by "Art By Jac" was included in the envelope. 

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