Tuesday, March 29, 2011


E-mail art call... fun concept from corral de piedra.

This is my submission. The original field seemed like a potato farm, made me think about the famine, then I refer to my photos of the art bottles where I depict potato farmers, a letter from an American agriculturist saying that the potato famine would not last too long... and a postmark from county Cork, 1848.

Sunday, March 27, 2011


my postcard entry for abad ~ memento
John S. Turner 1947 – 1972

John S. Turner was a sensitive man. I didn't know him, I only know of him through his papers, personal items and his sister, Julie.

He was born just after WWII, his Hungarian parents had moved to Germany then. They relocated to Australia, and later to Cleveland, Ohio then Hollywood, California. Chess was his constant companion. He wrote in his bible that he would have been a criminal if not for chess and a particular teacher.

John grew up in turbulent times. Vietnam, Middle East unrest, the "troubles" in Northern Ireland. These things had a profound effect on him. He served two years in the Air Force, stationed in Turkey. While there he learned some terrible news of his father's suicide. It was more than he could bear. When he came home from the service his mental health had deteriorated. He lived with Julie until one day he just took off for New York City. That was the last time she saw him.

Thursday, March 24, 2011


If you have been following along, you already know of my interest in death. Since my friend Mary C. Leto found the mystery items hidden in a heating grate, and we collaborated on an artists book that expressed the plight of those buried on Hart Island (potter’s field for New York City), I have been encountering many connections which have lead me down a circuitous path that has culminated in my hosting an A Book About Death ~ Memento exhibition at the Willo North Gallery in Phoenix this May.

During my research about Hart Island, I learned of Julie S. Lantz whose brother died in 1972 at the age of 24 and had also been buried on Hart Island. I was deeply moved by the story of this Honorably Discharged Air Force Veteran, John S. Turner AF 18844546, and his sister’s efforts to have his body exhumed and brought home to Southern California. Initially Julie had been told that her brother’s remains were found, however, to her profound disappointment, a bureaucratic mistake had been made. In addition to the long-overdue military burial Julie was trying to obtain, she wanted to include John’s personal items (his mementos) with his body. Unfortunately without John’s remains, no plot or niche could be used to bury only his things.

While I was putting together the upcoming ABAD ~ Memento exhibition, I contacted Julie with the proposal that I would like to base my postcard entry for the show on John’s story. In addition, Julie agreed to loan all of her brother’s personal items to me, and they will be displayed in a special area of the gallery, telling the unique story of a long forgotten soul, an Air Force Veteran and a beloved brother.

A special ceremony will be performed to honor all of the people represented on the amazing postcards in the show.


This one was made for my dear friend, Shari, who is an excellent collage artists. She inspires me, and I wanted to say thanks.

Components: a page from Dicken's "The Haunted Man", a map of London, child from McCall's Complete Needlework Catalog 1940, 17th century ear illustration, a label from Charles E. Tuttle, Co (book publishers) and some Asian inspired rubber stamps.

sent to Shari Bombeck


This is in reply to a mail art letter, which on the back was photocopied the path to heaven, it reminded me of some old catechism lessons from grammar school, so I couldn't resist this reply and thinking about blood.

Components: page from St. Joseph's Missal (the Catholic's official Mass book) depicting the crucifiction, a movie stub from "There Will Be Blood", 1919 Red Cross Stamps from my father's collection, some vintage wall paper, a great vintage unknown high school girl and some red crayon.

sent to Richard Canard


This found photo was with a group from upstate New York, a Greek family with some relatives that look like they could be part of my family too. I just love these two guys. I wish I knew their real story, but instead, I'll just compose one.

Components: 17th century medical illustration, vintage wall papers, rubber stamp, soldier photo and a page from the book "The 42nd Parallel" in which some soldiers are facing a court martial.

sent to Rachel Freeman-Irvin


Wednesday morning musings, practicing for a large project coming soon.

Components: story from children's book, "A good man and his good wife", photocopy of an old German postcard addressed to Willy Herrmann, Brooklyn, N.Y., vintage wall paper and blown-up vintage photo.

sent to Mary Cartledgehayes

Friday, March 18, 2011


Entry to a mail art call put together by Reinhard Hammann in Mainz, Germany. Show dates May 13 to June 12.

Components: photocopy of Mrs. Mary Searles Penrose, Elgin Academy, 1930. German stamp, German language page, old wallpaper, crayon, tracing paper and rubber stamps.

Most of these things would not have been possible without the invention of the printing press.

Tuesday, March 15, 2011


After sending my first Quaker art to the Netherlands, I received a wonderful comment from Valentine M. Herman, in France, who promised to send me a postcard with some history of a very famous Quaker from Valentine's home town. I received his card and loved it. This is my reply back. I thought I would now focus on the history of another one of America's famous Quakers, William Penn.


This piece was done for the Imagine Squirrels show in Miami, AZ, put together by Mudhead Reynolds. Which pays homage to the work of French novelist René Daumal and his unfinished work Mount Analogue. Excerpt:
While climbing, take note of all the difficulties along your path. During the descent, you will no longer see them, but you will know that they are there if you have observed carefully. There is an art to finding your way in the lower regions by the memory of what you have seen when you were higher up. When you can no longer see, you can at least still know. . .
Thought process... mountain climbing lead to Switzerland, that lead to yodeling songs... the russian stuff, well, that's a secret.

Wednesday, March 9, 2011


Sending a collage out to my father's cousin in NY, I thought it would be fun to give a nod to St. Patrick. Components: an Irish stamp from my dad's collection, a 1960s advert, vintage wall paper, green crayon and some of the text from Mr. Dooley on Making a Will and Other Necessary Evils chapter on St. Patrick's Day.


Having fun responding to a letter from Richard C. He remarked about a comment that I had been doing mail art since 1965 by saying I must have been doing crayon drawings for my grandmother, sweet. That made me think of my Yiayia, and inspired this postcard. Some of the components: a voter registration punch card for a Mr. Callahan of Staten Island from 1964, vintage wall paper, a telephone memo sheet and a photo of an old woman.

Saturday, March 5, 2011


Getting involved in the A Book About Death exhibits has introduced me to a great group of creative people and inspired me to apply for a membership in the International Union of Mail Artists (IUOMA).

This card was done in response to a request from a fellow member, who said she loves to get mail made from food packaging. I had an old granola box and decided to turn it into a puzzle... all the clues are there, can you guess who it represents?