Monday Morning Mail Art Call: Trash Bubbles: A Poetic Exploration of Trash

There were rumors… people were talking… it was whispered in corners….

Now, it’s official!

Trash Bubbles: A Poetic Exploration of Trash is an exhibit designed to bring about an awareness of trash as art.

Intended to coincide with Earth Day 2018, it is to be an exhibit of my own Trash Bubble creations alongside those created by other artists and mail artists around the globe. In addition, there will be public workshops culminating in a mass mailing of commemorative Trash Bubbles.

The purpose is to bring about an awareness of trash as art, as poetry. These pieces shock and awe on a fun and engaging level. I hope to spark conversation and encourage participation. A venue is currently being sought in the Pittsburgh area, details to follow.

In the meantime, I’d like all of you who said, “I might like to try my hand at creating one of those Trash Bubble thingies!” to get the ball rolling.

Here’s what I need from you:

  • Make a Trash Bubble using ANY SIZE of clear plastic consumer packaging. Note: I have found that pieces smaller than 4x6x2 usually require an envelope, so they don’t get lost. A piece measuring about 4x6x2 can easily be mailed without an envelope and currently costs less than $3 to post within the continental US.
  • Fill it with trashy bits. Let the bits speak to the viewer, telling whatever story you wish. Think Trash Poetry. If necessary, add words to guide the observer.
  • Seal it with tapes, stitching, staples or other fasteners, making certain that your piece will survive the post.
  • Decorate the edges if you wish, but leave room on the back to address it to:

Trash Bubbles: A Poetic Exploration of Trash

The Studio at Piney Creek Acres

107 Marigold Lane

New Brighton, PA 15066 USA

  • Be sure to include your name, email and mailing address
  • Send your Trash Bubble along for inclusion by March 1, 2018
  • NO JURY, NO FEE, NO RETURNS
  • Join the Facebook group: Trash Bubbles: a Poetic Exploration of Trash to see the contributions of artists as they arrive and to receive updates concerning the exhibit.

This is going to be a grand adventure! I am eager to see your interpretation of the theme.

Happy Trash to you, until we meet again!

 

 

 

 

 

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Thursday Trash Bubble: Full Head, Big Life!

The Colgate toothbrush package used for today’s Trash Bubble had been floating around the studio for some time. I hung onto it because its chambers appealed to me, as did the color. I mean, who doesn’t love a little metallic red?

I was going to remove it from its place of honor and put it in the Trash Bubble drawer… (Yes, there’s a drawer!) but then I read the small print, “Full Head – Cheek and Tongue.” Immediacy struck. I gathered a few things and got to work, never mind that there were more pressing things on my plate.

You know me and my literal translations… there just had to be a real head in there! If I’d have had a doll head that fit… but alas, we ended up with a gentlemanly skull, complete with startlingly blue eyes. He’s sporting a Monopoly top hat for the occasion. A Full Head, indeed!

As I carefully threaded the bits on the metal rod, it occurred to me that most people whose brains are full and active are known to lead BIG LIVES, lives of purpose and contribution, lives that are full and rewarding… this guy is no exception. It took me a while to locate the “BIG” bead I’d found on the ground outside a local craft store, but I persisted because I had one of my famous preconceived ideas that are difficult to shake. I backed out the rod, added the bead and a “life” sticker to the old, red, star eraser that served as his chest and began to reassemble the whole.

Full Head. BIG life. Cheek & Tongue.

I very nearly changed the “&” in “Cheek & Tongue” to read “Cheek IN Tongue.” I’m glad I left it alone. It seems funnier somehow… and I’m fairly certain folks will still get it.

There you have it! My process for this particular piece is fairly close to that of other Bubbles I create. Granted, there’s a little more planning, a little less spontaneity in some of the others, but generally speaking, this is how I work.

If you enjoyed this post, you might enjoy next week’s Monday Mail Art Call. I will be issuing a call for Trash Bubbles created by YOU, my readers. The call is in preparation for an upcoming exhibit; Trash Bubbles: A Poetic Exploration of Trash. Be sure to check back for the details.

Happy Trash to you, until we meet again!

Thursday Trash Bubble: PINK!

June and July have been restorative and I am back in the studio creating Trash Bubbles with giddy abandon as I prepare for an upcoming exhibit.

PINK! is a piece that began with a literal interpretation of itself. I believe that this packaging originally held a few sample size bottles of Victoria’s Secret products.

It now contains all manner of PINK goodness….

Appealing to any young girl with a love of Princess Pink, this Trash Bubble is not to be mistaken for a child’s plaything.

The texture-rich interior can be glimpsed from both ends, as well as through the front and back.

The creation of PINK! delighted me at every turn, despite the fact that pink is far from my favorite color. My hope is that you are able to find some level of enjoyment in it as well.

Happy Trash to you, until we meet again!

 

Tuesday Trash Bubble: Tiny Junkyard Neighborhood 34

It’s time for Trash Bubble Tuesday!

This week’s Trash Bubble has been unofficially brought to you by Prima Marketing Inc. whose most worthy consumer packaging, meant to hold their Tiny Junkyard Findings; screw heads, became Tiny Junkyard Neigborhood 34! I was inspired by the palette of the package and the following is what transpired.

Tiny Junkyards… they’ve been on my mind for several weeks. Those three little cavities simply craved their own tiny junkyards!

While going through some bits for another bubble, it hit me! YARDS! Tiny, little yards made from junk… with tiny little houses! I knew just the thing! I grabbed my jar of vintage Monopoly houses and started hunting flat, green bits of trash to serve as yards for them.

The tale of the Tiny Junkyard Neighborhood grew in my mind as I worked. Who lived in these tiny green houses with these tiny green yards?

Tiny Junkyard Neighborhood 34 is a neighborhood of equality. Men and women live in harmony. There is no shame. There is no keeping up with the Joneses. They celebrate their days under blue skies and puffy clouds, lit by the sunshine of of a thousand tomorrows! There is joy and love, prosperity and abundance, beauty and peace, for all who live in Tiny Junkyard Neighborhood 34.


Happy Trash to you, until we meet again!

 

Tuesday Trash Bubbles: Create Your Own Luck!

Happy Tuesday, Everyone!

Today’s Trash Bubble is a piece I began and stalled on years ago… If a piece is beginning to feel forced, I’ll set it aside and return to it another time.

Recently, I revisited this one because the colors appealed to me. It was originally the packing for a roll of washi tape whose pattern is printed across the bottom in pink and brown. I’d added the brown horseshoe tape across the top before abandoning it.

“Luck,” it kept whispering….

This morning, I listened to an audio file by Beth Kempton… ‘How To Be Lucky.’ As you can imagine, it had a profound effect on the direction of this piece. The result is the intuitive bubble pictured above.

Imagine! Creating our own luck! Orchestrating our own dreams through self-fulfilling prophecy! Walking with the Creator in perfect harmony, instead of struggling on alone and miserable.

We all have the power to create our own luck. We need only seize it.

“Create Your Own Authentic Luck! This Way… Handle With Care! Good fortune takes preparation.”

The horseshoe tape, the 7 and the wishbone all serve as visual good luck totems. The bubble was sealed with plain transparent tape, rather than add another competing pattern or color to the whole.

The style of this piece and its resulting message are reminiscent of my very first trash bubbles, two of which are pictured in the blog’s header.

Trash Poetry is, for me anyway, an intuitive message that emerges in the creation of the piece. It begs to be set free and delights in its expression. This one is no exception.

Happy Trash to you, until we meet again!

 

 

Monday Morning Mail Art Call: Kurt Schwitters

Do you have a favorite mail artist in history?

I do!

Can you guess who it might be?

If you’re creating, sending and receiving mail art, but have never looked into its history or its principal players of years gone by, this call might entice you to do so.

Boy, oh boy! I was so glad to see the English translation for this one! My high school German isn’t very sharp these days.

Look up Kurt and his collages… I promise you won’t be disappointed.

If you really like his style, like I do, maybe you’ll be inspired to create a piece for the call. You have plenty of time. Deadline is December 16, 2017.

Happy Trash to you, until we meet again!

Tuesday Trash Bubbles: Wishes and Stars

One of my big goals for 2017 is to re-purpose my ENTIRE STASH of consumer packaging into Trash Bubbles. I can’t even tell you how many pieces I have waiting in the wings… probably hundreds!

Creating Trash Bubbles is, for me, an intuitive process that can’t be forced. It sometimes takes weeks or months to complete just one.

Working on several at a time is ideal for me because it gives me variety. Often when I’m stuck on one, another will grab my attention. In this way, I can keep working and making progress.

Last week, I snapped this pic as I began working on several bubbles…

This week, I managed to finish this one, Wishes and Stars.

It’s a very personal piece for me, filled with encouragement to “Reach for the Stars… Endless possibilities… Warning: Dreams can happen!” echoing all manner of affirmations that have been presenting lately, as I firmly set my intentions for the remainder of the year.

Often, I use a vintage bit, if not true trash, centrally in the bubble. This vintage Westinghouse button helped to anchor the affirmations. Like some of my other bubbles, this one is interactive. All but three of the stars are loose inside and when jiggled they float around… it reminds me of that little vintage game that you shook to get the balls to fall into place…. Please tell me that you remember it, too?

The back side of the packaging got a little workover, too. It tells one that “When you SHAKE it you can transform your LIFE!”


In the end, I was pleased with the way this bubble morphed from glow-in-the dark stars and planets packaging into an encouraging talisman.

Happy Trash to you, until we meet again!