Mail-art gallery

Some of my recent mail-art: 

Have you ever heard of mail art? Me neither, until recently. I just thought it might be nice to decorate the snail mail I was sending. And then at some point not so long ago, I found out there was an actual thing called “mail art.”

If you want to get serious about it, “mail art” is an artistic movement all about sending small-scale art through the post. Apparently it started in the 1960s and 70s under something called the “fluxus” movement, which was an anti-art, anti-establishment movement that aimed to challenge the very definitions of art. So, for example, it asked: “can snail-mail be art?”

Well, duh. Of course it can! I’m certainly not an artist, nor do I identify particularly with any kind of art movement. And yet here I find myself and my “pretty mail” stumbling into something that has been going on since before I was born.

Your comments make my day

  1. Hi! I’d love mail like this, hint hint. I trade Starbucks giftcards with people around the world. I have about 10 pieces of mail going out a week and wished I had this artistic ability to do up my stuff.

    Tim Hyre
    1739 Gray Gables Way
    Buford, GA 30519

  2. hello Naomi

    As tu reçu ma réponse à ton courrier avec mon enveloppe du petit prince ?
    Elisabeth

  3. I love your art. I wish I got something like that and I bet your mail puts a smile on people’s face. Great Job!!! :)

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  5. Hi Naomi!

    I am in LOVE-LOVE-LOVE with your snail mail collection! How can I order the pink octopus (for my biz) and others?

    I would love to have these to send to new clients!

    Thank you for you amazing artwork!

    • Hi Naomi!

      I have to say I LOVE YOUR COLLECTION! I lost my mom 2 years ago and she always used to send me handwritten letters and lovely cards… I miss her so much… and her mail.

      I have ventured onto my own virtual business and a pink octopus on one of your lovely mailings caught my eye! I wish I could order from you so that I could send out cards/notes to my clients (I just started and have a handful) so please share with me how I can! I wrote you before, but maybe I got lost in all of your fan mail! Still a fan and love your conviction regarding Facebook! I agree!!!

    • Thank you so much for your kind words. I’m so sorry for your loss if your mother. You must miss her so much! I did see your other comment – I planned to write to you so I’m sorry it took so long! I’m sure I can paint you a punk octopus. I’ll be in touch soon!

  6. Hello Naomi Bulger@Australia. I got your Mail art envelope full of nice things today!!! Thank you so much for 3 antique postage stamps + 3 yellow blank canvas cards + 5 postcards with your design + 1 gratitude card + 1 blue seal wax stick. Have a great mail day, maria das trouxas

  7. Hi Naomi! Thank you so VERY much for making it a Happy, Happy Mail Day for me. I’m so impressed with all that you do in addition to being a mom. I’m working on some return mail to you.
    Lilli

  8. Hello Naomi, I have discovered your blog through a penpal friend and was so exited to find another snail mail artist! (And yes, you are an artist so long as you create….anything!) Fluxus was a strange art movement (like the name itself which represented having, erm, lose bowels) and it’s interesting how anti art like Fluxus and Dada ironically became art movements! They are 2 of my main inspirations – I love the randomness and unconventional thinking they inspire!
    Oh…I’m babbling again… oops!
    Any who, when you have a moment I would love to swap some arty mail with you and also hear your story of how you hot to….here. Sending out heaps of mail!
    I have subscribed to your blog so just tell me where to send snail mail to you or how to send you my address.

    Thank you muchly

    • Wow Lexi I love all your insights! I’d love to send you some mail. If you go to the “subscribe” tab on my blog (up the top), you’ll see a form for you to fill out, where you can send me your address in a secure fashion. xp

  9. Hi! I LOVE your site! I just subscribed to you! I am hoping for some snail mail, if you are kind enough to send me one/some.

    Cheers!

    j.j.

  10. Hello again! Great! I look forward to your mail & I will definitely contact you when I receive it. :) Thank you!

  11. I just received your mail to Asheville, NC and I was in awe. Thank you for making my whole day and making me dream again.

  12. I just got your mail art in the mail and was in awe! It’s beautiful! I also have to tell you my son (21 months old) also LOVED the art; he helped open it up. Thank you for the wonderful surprise in the mail!

    • I’m sorry JJ. Your mail will arrive I promise! I hand make everything that goes into the letters, as well as painting the mail-art, so it takes me several hours to create each piece of mail. On any given day I owe at least 30 letters (at the moment it is closer to 50), so it does tend to take a long time for the mail to arrive. But I haven’t forgotten you!

  13. No worries! I’m just glad nothing got lost. It’ll be a great surprise when your mail art gets to me! :)

  14. Ooooo!!! What a treat to find your envelope on my doormat! That on his own was a treat that I kept turning over and over. And as if that wasn’t enough, it was stuffed with beautiful goodies! How I love, love, love this. And how I wish i was as creative and gifted as you…I posted a photo on my fb and it allready has lots of likes :)
    Thinking of a proper way of returning the favor.

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  16. I have just received my mail!!! You have no idea the joy you have brought me and my children! We want to get involved now! It is so lovely to get “happy mail”. Thank you!

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  18. Oh wow your envelopes are gorgeous! I can’t imagine what the inside looks like! Very well done! And inspiring!

    • Thank you so much Renee! You are right, I should show the insides sometimes. In this batch, the letters were filled with handmade envelopes and hand-made stickers, and other snail-mail ephemera.

  19. Gorgeous Naomi! Such beautiful artwork. I’m starting to send snail mail again after a very long time. My handwriting is not what it used to be, but with practice hopefully it will be more legible, heehee. Keep up the great work and I love discovering new art forms like this. I’ve put your book on my wishlist at The Book Depository. Hopefully they’ll get more in soon. xxx

    • Oh that’s so nice of you Renee! Unfortunately, my handwriting never seems to get any better, no matter how much practice I do. I hope you have a lot of fun snail mailing. I think you’ll get so much joy not only out of the making, but out of the pleasure your friend will feel when one of your letters arrives in their letter boxes! xo

  20. Wow amazing work, this is my kind of Art!
    I am going to research the anti-art anti-establishment you mentioned, so interesting.
    Thank you
    Sandy of North London

    • Hi Sandy, thank you for your lovely words! If you look up “history of mail art” you’ll come up with all kinds of fascinating stories and examples.

  21. I LOVE your art, it is really something. I wish I could receive some of your mail art designs for a couple of fun and interesting projects I have in mind. I can provide more details in e-mail.

    Ps. Your art mail is the most inspiring thing I saw today after 4 hours of surfing the web for creative envelopes. It’s easy to see you have tons of passion for this.

    • Hi Mariya – I’ve painted on all kinds, but mostly as you can see here I like to paint on kraft paper. Sometimes I buy the envelopes, other times I make my own out of rolls of kraft paper.

  22. Great, fun art. Nice for receiver, but much enjoyed by postal workers. If you use watercolor, do you protect your art to protect it from weather? Thanks