Fighting to save the humble letter

I have launched a campaign to save the letter as it battles to survive in a technological age dominated by email and Twitter. Much of my work is based on the idea of letter writing and I am a follower of the Mail Art project that has brought together an international community of artists and illustrators. Each artists sends one of the others a posted package but, unlike a traditional letter or parcel, it is intended to be received and admired for its own sake. The art of letter writing is dying out, which is a real shame because it is such a powerful medium. Receiving a letter is one of the great joys of life and, through my art, I am trying to persuade people to keep writing them. In days gone by, letters were viewed as an art form and some of the great figures of literature excelled at them. There is now a preoccupation with emails, texts and Tweets and I am doing my bit to revive  and celebrate, the art of letter writing. My art installations repeatedly return to the theme and have included Air Mail 2012, featuring clothes, letters and photographs, which was exhibited recently at the Sight on Site Exhibition at the New School House Gallery, York. It was inspired by the idea of personal histories and memories centred on correspondence from Therese, my French penpal between 1973–1978. The installation celebrates the endurance of friendship and was commended by artist Zeigam Azizov, born in Azerbaijan and living in London, who praised the standard of exhibits when he visited the show.

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