Need some ART donations for a group CROSSROADS ARTS COUNCIL, who is having a fundraiser get a permanent venue. Please be kind enough to mail something?  We hope to sell in August to raise money.  Thank you
Mary J. Grellner
254 Green Summit Dr.
Wentzville, MO 63385  USA

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Comment by De Villo Sloan on May 30, 2019 at 8:15pm

I know these comments will not endear me to IUOMA members, but I feel I must express my convictions & present information in my role as an Investigative Mail Artist. My function is not to be "popular girl" & in the Eternal Network. And we must tolerate & consider different points of view.

Again, my apologies to Mary Gellner. In as much as I know her, I can say she is a kind & well-meaning person. Unfortunately, she is a messenger for the Crossroads Arts Council in Missouri, which I must report might be more suspect than their "useful tool" our dear Mary.

My main point in this discussion is that I am against digital panhandling for "the arts" at IUOMA & in the mail art network generally. (Of course there are always exceptions.)

I present a link to the Crossroads Art Council (CAC). Perhaps we should have factual information about causes when people ask us to make gifts if we must go down this road of IUOMA Go Fund Me? Do you want your name & art associated with a corporate behemoth accused of greed, exploitation & environmental destruction? CAC receives other corporate support as well.

Here is what I find most disturbing. The Crossroads Arts Council already receives funding from business & corporate interests, including WalMart? WalMart funds CAC!

FURTHER CAC receives funding from the State of Missouri - government funds from what many consider to be a primarily Right Wing branch of government.

In my opinion, by joining the Missouri government & WalMart you produce an "official" arts organization dedicated to perpetuating the toxic fake culture that is already stifling the world's creativity & artists. The result is not freedom but suppression of artists. Already, we are asked to give our art for free to the CAC, which already receives corporate & government funds? CAC is precisely what is killing authentic culture, imho.

I rescind my offer of a brick to CAC. The brick is for sale to CAC for $1,000.

I am not asking IUOMA to pass rules about digital panhandling. I don't believe in rules any more than I believe in "arts councils." But I do ask mail artists - people with exceptionally kind hearts - to think about why & what they support.

Does Richard B. really think his beautiful envelopes are going to construct a building? Does CAC believe selling mail art is going to help them in any significant way? Tell me how that goes.

Signing off, yer ol' bud DVS

Comment by Mary J. Grellner on May 29, 2019 at 11:00pm

Dear Richard:  Thank you for your response about the donations...we are a small area in Missouri, USA with growing numbers of people and children and we are trying to start an Art Association for the residents.  We foresee having art classes for the kids, and shows and classes for adults soon.  

Our reason now for asking for donations is to sell some Art at the Community Center just to raise some money to follow up with our idea and have a little money for supplies, advertising, etc.

Anything you could send to us will be greatly appreciated. My email is:

if you need more information. and Thank You for your response.

Mary J. Grellner

Comment by Richard BAUDET on May 29, 2019 at 7:28pm

Hello Mary !   i participed  several times  for  Charity  Association ...with pleasure.  (Sicks children ) 

What kind  is Crossroads Arts Council  ? The purpose ?,Thank you for your answer .  Friendly yours ; 

Comment by Nancy Bell Scott on May 29, 2019 at 5:47pm

The thing is, many non-mail-art pieces populate my studio, and I like hearing of art organizations forming. I'll be happy to contribute, Mary; you'll hear from me soon.

Comment by Mark Rossmiller on May 25, 2019 at 5:11pm

mail (v.) art (n.) or mail (n.) art (v.)

It falls under both of these definitions.

Comment by Mark Rossmiller on May 25, 2019 at 5:10pm

In the documentary "how to draw a bunny," I think it is called, it talks about Ray selling a work; the buyer paid less than Ray asked for it so Ray cut a percentage of the collage off the work before mailing it to the buyer. It was sent by mail but the money transaction happened in person. I consider this mail art, don't you?

Comment by De Villo Sloan on May 25, 2019 at 3:51pm

Mark Rossmiller, I think we have some obligation to try to be accurate.

I do not believe Ray Johnson ever sold his mail art. I would be glad to see some proof that he did and I will concede the point.

Ray Johnson was a successful artist during his lifetime and left a large estate in financial terms. His collage work sold for thousands when he was alive. His mail art was separate and free. I think this is the model for other artists,

For instance, you might sell cards in an Etsy shop very successfully. But you share cards for free in the network. We're network friends. But really you're trying to sell me something? The relationship is already toxic.

And I'll tell you more - once relationships are formed a lot of mail artists are helping each other in numerous ways quietly. Let those relationships work.

Ray Johnson drowned himself in 1995. It's easy to read that in the myth of the starving artist in a cruel world. Problem is, he actually had a decent career, good friends and followers. It's a more complex story.

I also think more research needs to be done on the Crossroads Arts Council.

Again, fb is a loud open air market of people selling paintings, books, tee-shirts and outrageous acts of self-promotion. IUOMA offers some relief from that. I'd hate to see it change.

Comment by Judith Dagan on May 25, 2019 at 6:50am

Mary I. Grellner generously  donates her time and energy to CROSSROADS ART COUNCIL. This seems to me to be a worthy endeavour.I will gladly donate a piece of my art. Good Luck. See you in the mail.

Comment by Mark Rossmiller on May 24, 2019 at 11:29pm

From what I've seen having one foot in the mail art network and the other foot in the fine art / art for commodity system, I think that for art to make any real money you have to be pretty well established as an art-salesman. People buy a brand more often than they buy something because it looks cool.

You'd be hard pressed trying to make money off mail art. I tried it once for a show and it flopped. It also set a few people off who were very against trying to commodify mail art (*which was kind of fun to do).

Ray Johnson sold mail art, but he also killed himself I think. Perhaps there's a connection to be made.

Comment by De Villo Sloan on May 24, 2019 at 11:21pm

correction: Have a mail art show to promote your organization. Sure. But don't SELL the stuff.

(I would be glad to contribute a brick)



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