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Pushing the envelope : the evolution of mail art in Canada


Pushing the envelope : the evolution of mail art in Canada

Robertson, Emily (2007) Pushing the envelope : the evolution of mail art in Canada. Masters thesis, Concordia University.

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MR34720.pdf - Accepted Version


Mail art can be most basically defined as art that uses the postal system. The post is the support, comparable to the painter's canvas. The art produced within a mail art context is traditionally exchanged outside the museum setting. Since its making is a shared responsibility between artists and the post office, each piece of correspondence undergoes a series of manipulations, some of which are intended by the sender, and others which are the inadvertent results on the part of the postal system in printing or sorting. Today, participants in the mail art movement are known interchangeably as mail artists, correspondents and networkers. Pushing the Envelope explores the mail art phenomenon, providing readers with a detailed investigation of its emergence and evolution in Canada. This thesis covers such topics as the historical roots of mail art, the development of mail art magazines and archives, the relationship between mail art and the institutions that exhibit and collect this art form, as well as the movement's recent branching out to incorporate aspects of self-help. Each chapter explores a different decade, from the 1950s to the present day. Mail art projects by Anna Banana, Henrik Drescher, General Idea, Image Bank, Sarah Jackson, Ray Johnson, Amy Lam, Ed Varney and Frank Warren illustrate how the production of mail art evolved over time.

Divisions:Concordia University > Faculty of Fine Arts > Art History
Item Type:Thesis (Masters)
Authors:Robertson, Emily
Pagination:viii, 134 leaves : ill. ; 29 cm.
Institution:Concordia University
Degree Name:M.A.
Program:Art History
Thesis Supervisor(s):MacKenzie, Catherine
ID Code:975903
Deposited By: Concordia University Library
Deposited On:22 Jan 2013 16:17
Last Modified:18 Jan 2018 17:41
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