MinXus Mail Bag: Postal Disinformation by Joey Patrickt (Oakland, California, USA)

Mail art by Joey Patrickt (Oakland, California, USA)


Is it the Year of the Pig? The Year of the Monkey? Mail artists are always aware of astrology & numerology. But here at the ranch the Year of the Mink never arrives. Other critters are for wranglin’ or shootin’ not countin’.

Regardless of the layers of cryptic symbols that might or might not exist we were thrilled to receive this classic work by Joey Patrickt. We believe he is one of the great contemporary masters of the Eternal Network. Joey included a note from (relative to us) sunny NoCal on the reverse side:


Mail art by Joey Patrickt

And some studies of this FAB piece:



Deepest thanks to Joey Patrickt!


Naked Soles: An Artist’s Book by Gerda Osteneck (Regina, Saskatchewan, Canada)

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Mail art by Gerda Osteneck (Regina, Saskatchewan, Canada)


Somewhere along the dusty and circuitous trail a rumor spread in the Eternal Network (I believe mostly thanks to Marie Wintzer) that I had a peculiar interest in obtaining the inked or painted footprints of women via the postal system.

For a time, I received foot art from women (and a few men). But the truth is I have little interest in women’s feet; the whole thing was a joke at my expense. This sordid affair did generate some interesting art, which is documented elsewhere. I believe there is an IUOMA-Ning group devoted to foot art that was founded at the height of this minor mania. But little has happened in this area of late and foot fetish art – thankfully – has faded.

Imagine my surprise, then, at receiving this wonderful artist’s book of footprints from the great Canadian artist Gerda Osteneck. I have no idea if Gerda knows my history with foot art. I tend to doubt it, but I was compelled to confess my history with the painted heel and the inked toe. This context could possibly disrupt my usual objectivity. Regardless, Gerda Osteneck has created a wonderful artist’s book that I am thrilled to archive and document.














MinXus Mail Bag: Last Reflooration Cut-Ups + More! by Ficus strangulensis (Charleston, West Virginia, USA)

Mail art by Ficus strangulensis (Charleston, West Virginia, USA)


Here at MinXus-LynXus we always look forward to receiving mail from our ol’ bud the great Ficus strangulensis aka Panjandrum of Blorchistan, Fluxus Maximus, etc., etc., from the wilds of West Virginia. In response to a copy of Xerolage 71 we mailed him, Fike sent us these FAB images of his vispo, Fluxus art-in-life and, a rare prize: one of his cut-ups from 2006.

Our views about Ficus strangulensis as a leading visual poet, Eternal Network all-star and contemporary master of the Burroughsian cut-up technique are a matter of public record. (The Ohio State University is collecting his work as well.) So we are especially pleased Fike sent a cut-up we did not have to add to the venerable MinXus-LynXus Archives. We are equally pleased to share this wealth with you, our faithful & dear readers. A closer look at the piece:



Classic visual poetry by Ficus strangulensis (Charleston, West Virginia, USA)

The envelope is tremendous mail art:



MinXus Mail Bag: FluxFish by Melissa Wand (Wausau, Wisconsin, USA) +! A&P by Carmen Kennedy (Austin, Texas, USA)

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Mail art by Melissa Wand (Wausau, Wisconsin, USA)


In this New Order of mail art, Fluxus is another facet of network history that is enjoying renewed interest. Melissa Wand’s FluxFish project captures the spirit of the “Old Fluxus” and translates it into an activity coherent in the 21st century.

The Fluxus movement of the 1960s and 70s – most commonly associated with visual and performance art – embraced, practiced and encouraged mail art perhaps second only in fervor to Ray Johnson (who was associated with Fluxus but not a member). Many mail art conventions we take for granted today have their origin in Fluxus, including – for one – the emphasis on collage. In the alternative culture of the Eternal Network, Fluxus concepts continue unabated.

Melissa Wand – as far as we know – is a newcomer to the network. The FluxFish are her MinXus-LynXus debut. We are thrilled she sent them. Whether by knowledge or intuition, Melissa Wand created a project that fits the Fluxus spirit perfectly.

The FluxFish are accompanied with instructions. The card (below) is essentially an Event Score – the Event Score being one of the most common Fluxus artifacts – that gives the recipient instructions and brings a performance component into mail art exchange. The origami-inspired fish made of shredded envelopes are Fluxus friendly as well: They are a creative activity accessible to everyone and have an element of anti-art.


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Mail art by Melissa Wand (Wausau, Wisconsin, USA)


Melissa Wand also included an Add & Pass sheet started by Carmen Kennedy (Austin, Texas, USA). Note adds have been made so far by The Celestial Scribe (Brazil) and The Introverted Post (Ohio, USA).



Mail art by Carmen Kennedy (Austin, Texas, USA)


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Secret Masters of Add & Pass: Bonnie Diva & Joey Patrickt (The Bon-Joey Conspiracy)

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Mail art by Joey Patrickt (Oakland, California, USA) & Bonnie Diva (Gurnee, Illinois, USA)


As my investigative mail art series on the current Add & Pass phenom continues, I find that  veteran legend Joey Patrickt’s (DKult Joey, Post-Urbanism) involvement in A&P is far greater than I ever would have suspected. These sheets that have recently crossed my desk and that I now share with you reveal an interesting new development in A&P currents.  They offer a hint about where the turgid mud flow of A&P sheets is ultimately headed and what it represents.

As you see, Joey Patrickt has teamed up with acclaimed emerging mail art star Bonnie Diva to launch some interesting new Add & Pass pieces. Bonnie Diva is much admired for her vintage aesthetic and for being an innovative zinester. Yet matching her with Joey Patrickt, a post-pop conceptualist, might seem dissonant or even implausible. But in these sheets they prove themselves to be a great collab duo, and the magic of the Eternal Network shines through.

HilgArt (Tom Hilgartner) (USA) and Massimo Medola (Italy) also contributed to these pieces. Massimo Medola has been involved with many recent A&P sheets I have seen, including the E (Ambassador of Utopia) Fan Club.

Perhaps the current A&P craze will prove to be a glue uniting disparate factions (such as Old School and Newbies) of the evolving network. Add & Pass, instead of being quicksand, might prove to be a healing fountain.



Another Bon-Joey A&P:


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This Add & Pass sheet was also included, although I don’t think it is necessarily a Bon-Joey composition:




Previous installments in the “Secret Masters of Add & Pass Series”









MinXus Mail Bag: Fluxus Space Buck + More! by Cathy Barnett (O Fallon, Missouri, USA)

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Mail art by Kathy Barnett (O Fallon, Missouri, USA)


Making & distributing Fluxus Bucks is another long-running activity that is currently experiencing a revival in the international mail art network.

We have especially enjoyed seeing images of Fluxus Space Bucks displayed at IUOMA-Ning. Mail artist Kathy Barnett kindly sent this wonderful example for our humble blog & the MinXus-Lynxus Archive, which has a very large contemporary Fluxus collection. This also marks Kathy Barnett’s MinXus-LynXus debut: We extend a secret MinXus handshake to her, give a wink & offer a “Big Howdy” to this Tenderfoot already sticking a toe in the sometimes muddy Fluxus Creek.

According to introductory information in Ruud Janssen’s IUOMA-Ning Fluxus Buck group, “Fluxus Buck is an artistic project from Julie Jefferies aka. ex posto facto (USA) which she started in 1994. A Fluxus Buck is an artists’ banknote which she distributed into the Mail-Art network. Others created Fluxus Bucks as well.” (Ruud Janssen’s Fluxus Word project is an even earlier – 1988 – mail art activity that is still very much active today.)

Fluxus Bucks have been circulating for nearly 25 years. Truly remarkable examples can be found from around the world on the internet. Fluxus Bucks are, in fact, a world unto themselves (in which anyone can participate) & the IUOMA-Ning group is one place to get involved & learn more. Here is a link to the IUOMA-Ning Fluxus Buck group:


Fluxus Buck creator Julie Jeffries (Paquette) currently resides in Dallas, Texas, USA. She maintains a Fluxus Buck page on Facebook where you can see great examples of Fluxus Bucks & connect with the artists who made them:


We honor Julie Jeffries Paquette as the founder of Fluxus Bucks. But given the relatively late date of 1994, this Fluxus Space Buck has led us to meditate upon possibilities of earlier Fluxus Buck inspirations from the Fluxus movement that goes back to the 1960s. (If anyone has any insights, please share with us via comments!)

Fluxus leader George Maciunas (died 1978) had a vision that grew more pronounced as he neared his demise of Fluxus becoming an alternative community of artists living largely outside mainstream society & being self-sufficient. Other Fluxus members shared his vision.

In addition to a radically different perspective on culture (which is the core of the movement), there were schemes for Fluxus architecture, Fluxus sports, a Fluxus island or submarine (no kidding!), even stranger things & various Fluxus economic schemes to support the artists including Fluxus products.

The idea of an actual Fluxus currency (more than a parody or criticism of capitalism) is very much in accordance with the original movement. So, given current information, Julie Jeffries’ project is a fairly brilliant addendum to the Fluxus of George Maciunas (which, in fact, demanded rigid adherence that few could tolerate for long). The participating artists keep the Fluxus spirit moving.

Our new mail art friend Cathy Barnett has brilliantly enhanced the Fluxus Buck. The concept of Fluxus in space is just natural & part of a logical progression. Cathy Barnett deserves credit for helping advance Fluxus in the 21st century & thus making it new – as someone somewhere suggested about something else.

AND Cathy Barnett also included some other great mail art along with the Fluxus Space Buck:


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Mail art by Cathy Barnett


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Mail art by Cathy Barnett






“Folk Heroes”: An Explosive New Trashbook by Lisa Iversen (Indiana, USA)

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Folk Heroes – a Trashbook by Lisa Iversen (Indiana, USA)


Lisa Iversen (aka Skybridge Studios, aka Lisa Lisa, aka “The Quiet One”) was an Eternal Network veteran well  before she achieved the status of mail art  “Legend” via Trashpo & DKult. She has also produced notable vispo & asemics of lasting consequence.

Lisa Iversen is more humble & less flamboyant than many of her Trashpo counterparts, but those “in the know” can testify to her importance & network popularity. After nearly a decade of Trashpo, Fan Club Wars & asemic & vispo debates, it is not surprising that our dear Lisa Lisa now has chosen to live a somewhat secluded life on a vast overgrown plantation in the heart of Indiana, miles from the nearest post office. We can respect her privacy & hope you do as well.

But for whatever reason, the world-renowned Skybridge Studios re-opened at least long enough to create this contemporary Trashbook masterpiece: Folk Heroes. We are the lucky recipients & thus share with you.

The Trashbook (along with the Trash & Pass) is one of Trashpo’s greatest contributions to correspondence art. One need not dig back in time too far on the net to find Trashbook masterpieces, vast dumpster epics of visionary slack. Yet today, in a new era of add & pass & zine mania, few artists dare attempt the sustained discipline required to produced a Trashbook; the bar was set very high by the Trashpoets. Lisa Iversen, in our estimation, has produced a Trashbook instant classic with Folk Heroes.

Many networkers ask us, “Is Trashpo over?” What has happened to DKult?” Questions along those lines. We do not believe it is our place to answer questions of such great complexity & import, even if we could.

Lisa Iversen’s Folk Heroes might actually begin to answer these questions. Folk Heroes could well be one of the first serious reflections on Trashpo in a Post-Trashpo Era. Folk Heroes has a self-reflective quality that is absent in the earlier Trashbooks. Lisa Lisa seems to be looking back, brilliantly we might add, on the modes & individuals who shaped Trashpo & DKult. Insights & surprises are abundant The cryptic quality of the discourse is fabulous.

Deepest thanks to Lisa Iversen for this marvelous Trashbook.


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Cover of Folk Heroes by Lisa Iversen


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By Lisa Iversen. A nod to the great Nancy Bell Scott (Maine, USA)?


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Mail art book by Lisa Iversen


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Folk Heroes by Lisa Iversen


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Back cover of Folk Heroes by Lisa Iversen


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MinXus Mail Bag: “Pieces of Eight” Concept Mail Art by RCBz (St. Cloud, Minnesota, USA)

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“Pieces of Eight” : Mail art by RCBz (St. Cloud. Minnesota, USA)


Any Tenderfoot who has wetted her/his feet in the Eternal Network sufficiently (say a year or two) has probably encountered the very talented but elusive RCBz.

After close to a decade, here at The Ranch, we can’t claim to have learned all that much about RCBz, but we have gained an appreciation of his art. We do know that a number of networkers we deeply respect consider RCBz to be one of the finest digital collage makers out there. (That is, the collages are composed digitally but distributed via snail mail.)

RCBz has graced the humble MinXus-LynXus pages many times before. Yet time has been passing on the dusty, winding trail without so much as a smoke signal from our “Ol’ Bud” (as the great Fike calls a Camerado). Then we received this wonderful “Pieces of Eight” work from RCBz.

We call it “concept mail art” because RCBz built the composition(s) and mailing around a concept: He inter-connects himself & eight others through art. We believe this is the kind of “concept art” that makes mail art a great experience for participants & a unique genre.

Ironically, while the piece encourages unity & connects people who might not be ordinarily connected, it is achieved through fragmentation. (A “chance operations” element is built into the concept too.)

The concept is original – no question; but it echoes other concept pieces based on the dismembering of artwork by, for instance, Ray Johnson & Cheryl Penn (who cut up entire paintings & mailed the pieces all over the world).

Deepest thanks to RCBz!


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Samantha Price

Thea Hollister

De Villo Sloan

Jayne Birket Lyons

Pamela Suzanne Lashbrook

Fast Eyes

Jorge Martin

Stan Askew


The envelope:


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Scannerbed debris collab by RCBz & De Villo Sloan



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Secret Masters of Add & Pass: Joey Patrickt +! More (Oakland, California, USA)

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Mail art (a&p sheet) from Joey Patrickt (Oakland, California, USA) including contributions by Joey, Mike Dickau (Sacramento, California, USA); The Sticker Dude (New York City, USA); “Opal Moiety” (San Francisco, California, USA) & more explained below


My investigative mail art series documenting & exploring the current add & pass mania (add & passion?) sweeping the Eternal Network continues with this very interesting mailing from Joey Patrickt in California.

I have noted in previous posts in the series that “Old School” mail artists seem to be drivers of the a&p nouveaux, based on what lands in my mailbox & what I see posted online.

Make no mistake! Many new generation artists are contributing to contemporary a&p. In my opinion, the sheets (and books!) are becoming increasingly creative & sophisticated. Usually, though, I will recognize a veteran or two among the new names on any given sheet. (Often, a veteran launches the a&p.)

This is a pleasing continuity of tradition because – of course – the “Old School” folks can often be traced to associations with Ray Johnson & the New York Correspondance School. Ray Johnson & his cohorts pioneered the a&p we know today.

This a&p from Joey Patrickt boasts longtime West Coast mail art stars (as well as The Sticker Dude from the East) and a Rocola endorsement from the great John Held, Jr. I am afraid Opal Moiety (Jonkar Alex Nu-Jetson) is too cryptic or insider or esoteric for me to offer a comment of any use. The sheet has great pedigree but seems to be begging for additions. Here is the reverse side:


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Joey Patrickt also included additional items in the mailing including these amazing stamps:


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By Joey Patrickt


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Previous installments in the “Secret Masters of Add & Pass Series”




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MinXus Mail Bag: FAB Collage by Amy Irwen (Rosemount, Minnesota, USA)

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Mail art by Amy Irwen (Rosemount, Minnesota, USA)


We are in a golden age of add & pass, yet – clearly – collage remains the core genre in mail art. A casual gloss of the IUOMA-Ning gallery reveals networkers are producing extraordinary collage of astonishing variety and in large quantities.

Amy Irwen sent this FAB work that captures the spirit of contemporary network collage. The piece is large and substantial yet still very much mail art. The color and texture are astonishing, and we are thrilled to have the hard copy to admire, preserve in the M-L archives and to document.

Deepest thanks to Amy Irwen for this special work!


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Detail study of collage by Amy Irwen



Oops! (Outtake)