Monday, November 30, 2009

This is What Happens When Your Son is an Artist

“I’m always picking stuff up to use in my journals, scraps of garbage that other people don’t even notice.” ~ My son, Josh.

When my husband, Joe, and I were in Asheville this past April, visiting my potter son, Josh, Joe scribbled some phone numbers on a piece of mail that he found in my car and then left it by mistake in Josh’s studio. It was a Red Cross CPR card, reflecting my most recent training, something I need for respite foster care work I do, and something I wouldn’t look too kindly on doing over. I asked Josh to look for it and to please mail it back.

Getting mail from Josh can be memorable event. The last time he sent me something in the mail I wanted to savor his handmade envelope art and was hesitant to rip it open. “It’s like getting a greeting card that you don’t even have to open. You could just send out envelopes like that with nothing inside them,” I told him.

Not only does it appear that Josh’s collage art is spilling over into postcards, by the looks of his most recent mailing to me, he has taken my advice to keep making envelope art to heart.

Inside the decorated envelope, fashioned from a page of art history notes, was a photo of an egg in a frying pan. Next to it a notebook was opened to a message that read: Hey Josh, I was in your class this fall and I was wondering if you have any (pottery) seconds for sale. On the back of the collaged photo, in Josh’s handwriting, the note to me said: Just letting you know that breakfast is still my favorite meal.

The CPR card was also enclosed, but it seemed dwarfed and insignificant amongst the rest.

Is art a luxury or a necessity? The mother of invention?

“I don’t even have any regular envelopes,” Josh later told me.

Originally posted on on June 7, 2006

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