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Strange Mail Received

By February 2, 2018Uncategorized

In January we did a series of creative challenges. January 15 was “Strange Mail” an invitation to “let standardized paper and implements be darned. Mail us something strange.” And you did!  Here is our postman, posing with one of Strange Mail pieces (he had previously shoved it under the door because we don’t have a mailbox, and when I am not there our mail is delivered through the gap between the doors. He said this particular piece wouldn’t push through the gap, so he tried to push it under the door, and I found it there, jammed between the mat the weather stripping like a filthy wad of garbage. I tugged at the corner of this wad and discovered this garbage had a stamp. A stamp!! On a dirty painting rag! And because it was not standard, someone had to hand mark the postage to say it was used. This is great. This stamped, marked, and immortalized painting rag has found a new home here. Thank you Michele!

Another difficult object was delivered with $7.20 postage due. I dug into petty cash and paid the carrier $8. He had no change, and I was fine making a donation to the system. I opened the package, and what did I find inside? $8 worth of stamps. How ironic.

This letter (below) arrived after another creative challenge (day 26) suggested a project from a vocabulary word – a word that means words that don’t mean anything: asemic writing.

Not realizing what it was, I did try to read the envelope, and then the letter, squinting at the return address, wondering who this person was who could not make their own address understood, while the League address had been so clear. Opening the soft brown letter paper to find more illegible script, I then realized it wasn’t to be read, it was to be an immortal piece of Strange Mail. And so it lives on our shelf. Thank you!

Note the Andrew Wyeth postage stamp. The stamps on each of these mailed items were quite extraordinary.

Mimi Torchia Boothby sent us this interesting thingy bobber. This is the kind of object that causes me to wonder if it’s just a collection of colorful metal and screws, or if it’s part of an actual useful thing, something that everyone knows what it is except me. We’ll see if I get a flood of emails saying “Duh, Ruthie, it’s an electronic ski boot clamp. Obviously.”

Rikkie Dale sent us this fun pop-up card from Japan. While it did not quite count as fully for Strange Mail points because it came in a standard envelope, it did bring delight to many of us here at the League. When you press a button at the top, lamp lights flicker, haunting bells chime, and a cat yowls.  Very cute.

Big thanks to everyone who sent us Strange Mail. We hope nothing was sent and not received. If you ever have a Strange Mail you wish to send us, please do! We wouldn’t want the postman to think we are only a receptacle for valpak coupons.

Disclaimer: we’re not responsible for anything at all ever.

Seattle Artist League
10219 Aurora Ave N.
Seattle, WA 98133


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