Check out this mail art show by Penelope Hetherington, a facebook-resisting artist whom I’ve known since her days in the Hot Toddy Girls avante-garde burlesque troupe, writing for Discorder and performing in the cabaret duo Psychotic Butler. She produced this latest show by mailing out a bunch of coupons from very old magazines and collecting the responses.
April 4 – 30, 2013
Mail Art Gallery
8165 Main Street Vancouver (MAP)
Filling out a coupon clipped from a 1964 edition of a magazine and then mailing it in a envelope with a dime taped to a piece of cardboard requires a kind of optimism–an innocence not so much feigned as permitted. The process of undertaking this slightly goofy task produces affect that wants examining. Anticipation, excitement and a pleasant feeling of destabilization suggest an underlying reluctance to accept that the past has completely disappeared. The slowness of the post spares us the anticlimactic flatness of assuming that something is over and gone. Instead, we get suspense.
Untimely Missives uses the materiality of the postal system to look for lapsed time in geographical space, and the Mail Art Gallery as a place to document the search. This project investigates the possibility that playing puckish games with time is one way of remaining limber in relation to temporality. It has nothing to do with nostalgia.
Visitors are encouraged to send their own untimely mail. Envelopes, scissors, coin cardboard, copies of advertisements from old publications, and a working post office are provided.
Penelope Hetherington is a Vancouver-based performer and installation artist.