MinXus Mail Bag: “Trashpo Gathering No. 17” by Cleo aka Claire Dinsmore (Lawrenceville, New Jersey, USA)

Claire - 9.6.2015 - 10 (tb)

Mail art by Cleo aka Claire Dinsmore (Lawrenceville, New Jersey, USA)

Part II: Trashpo

In Part I we shared Fluxus-inspired mail art we received from Claire Dinsmore:


We are now excited to share an exceptional Trashbook (we will call it that) that Claire included in her epical missive. Once untied, the work can be opened:

Claire - 9.6.2015 - 11 (tb)

We will focus on the title a bit more:

Claire - 9.6.2015 - 12 (tb)

Given her refined aesthetics and often formalist bent, one might reasonably conclude that the anti-art Trashpo contingent in the Eternal Network would hold no interest for Claire Dinsmore. Paradoxically, she has been (and continues to be) a regular and significant contributor to the Trashpo effort. The result is that Trashpo has changed. Claire Dinsmore – along with Cheryl Penn (South Africa) and Nancy Bell Scott (USA) among others – has opened the field of “Aesthetic Trashpo.” Marie Wintzer (Japan) unleashed the transformation with her call for “Trashpo without trash,” an essay about Nancy Bell Scott’s vispo. Aesthetic Trashpo now seems to be the dominant mode; gritty anti-art pieces are more the exception. Both tendencies occupy the space of Trashpo harmoniously. Claire has been a vocal advocate for the inclusion of Kurt Schwitters in the Trashpo canon (aka Schwitterspo). While she is highly original, we believe the Schwitters influence is present in her work. “Trashpo Gathering No. 17” is a stellar example of Claire’s finest work with Trashpo, and simply because she makes use of formal elements does not mean that the word is devoid of avant energy. She is very much in the post-avant continuum:

Claire - 9.6.2015 - 13 (tb)

This is an instance where the scans simply do not capture the brilliance and beauty of “Trashpo Gathering No. 17.” This piece (above) is the jewel in the crown of this extraordinary Trashbook. Actually, we do not mean to mix metaphors, but this Trashpo construct seems to represent a flower. Here is the back cover:

Claire - 9.6.2015 - 14 (tb)

Leaving no detail unattended in the pursuit of fine art, Claire Dinsmore’s envelopes can be counted on to please:

Claire - 9.6.2015 - end 1

The reverse:

Claire - 9.6.2015 - end 2

Deepest thanks to Cleo aka Claire Dinsmore for this extraordinary mail art!


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