Tag Archives: Fringe Festival 2016

Eat My Words features Mail Art Beyond the Fringe

Though “Beyond the Fringe” may be easily misinterpreted during the 2016 Campaign MinneDaDa1984 is only peripherally political.   MinneDaDa1984 might be characterized as the outer fringe of the Minnesota Fringe Festival that rolls out August 4 at venues throughout the Twin Cities. MinneDaDa1984 is actually an exuberant tribute to the centenary of Dada and the anniversary of the 1949 publication of Orwell’s iconic 1984.

More to the point this post is about the MinneDaDa1984 MailArtShow http://t337vhst2.xiagao.us/2016/04/20/12/46564656205.html. The Mail Art Show features avant-garde poets, filmmakers, neo-Dadaists, noise artists and a host of local and out-of-town alternative artists.

Newbies to the Mail Art Movement (like me) may need some background. According to this brief entry, the name pretty much says it all. Wikipedia, the infallible source of the recorded knowledge of humankind provides this brief definition:

Mail art (also known as postal art and correspondence art) is a populist artistic movement centered on sending small scale works through the postal service. It initially developed out of the Fluxus movement in the 1950’s and 60s, though it has since developed into a global movement that continues to the present.

Now on a mission to learn I clicked to find out about the Fluxus movement, thus defined by the oracle infallible Wikipedia:

A network of artists, composers and designers noted for blending different artistic media and disciplines in the 1960s. They varied in performance, Neo-Dada noise music and visual art, urban planning, architecture, design, as well as literature.

Because Mail Art is best understood and appreciated close up and personal, Eat My Words Bookstore in Northeast Minneapolis (http://www.eatmywordsbooks.com) will feature a Mail Art exhibit throughout the month of August. EMW will also host a special Mail Art reading on Thursday, August 11, 7:00 p.m.  

The exhibitor and featured guest for the evening at Eat My Words is local Mail Art aficionado Tom Cassidy. Cassidy has been in the Mail Art, underground and avant communities since the 70’s.   Last spring he put out a call for Mail Art to be exhibited in conjunction with the Fringe Festival. So far he has received over 100 pieces of art from over sixty artists whose postmarks reflect the global reach of the call and the interest in mail art.

Cassidy boasts that “submitted works include Dada and antiDada tributes, zines, collages, performance instructions, subversive and satiric pieces with a healthy dose of ‘politically-engineered sanity’”. The unique collection will be on display in binders and in the windows at Eat My Words throughout the month of August. Both the exhibit and the August event are free and open.

Special note: The Eat My Words bookstore offers a warm welcome and a delectable feast of rare and lightly used books!   The bibliophile owner and staff feature special exhibits and unique public programs akin to this one on an ongoing basis! Sign up for email updates on the EMW website.