Category Archives: Postboxes

postboxes, both for sending and receiving, gathered on rambles around countries and neighborhoods, no intrusions on privacy intended

Kintsugi-esque Postbox Haiku refresh – on a Goat Farm Visit

In the spirit of Kintsugi (usually meant for repairing busted ceramic pottery items with gold – and gluey goop but you don’t notice – to “emphasize” the imperfections), i repainted the worn-off top line of the haiku on the postbox at the “Rural Caprine Farm” in gold paint.

the “finished” fix-up / at this point, the paint is still wet so need to clearcoat next time over

Created this functional poetic installation (and the “inexact doppelgänger” on canvas) in 2018, scant days before meeting Ryoko.

the “shadow” of letters lost is poetic in itself but fresh up worthwhile

As it goes, this might be my most seen piece of art. And not only is it a functioning daily mailbox also – due to the exposure to elements and whatnot – the piece is constantly changing and evolving. Ergo: wabisabi / beauty in decay. Besides many insta-snaps, at least one patron painted the postbox itself.

Continue reading Kintsugi-esque Postbox Haiku refresh – on a Goat Farm Visit

Post’d: inbound treats from India, Lanka, Ukraine, Ireland, City Lights, Bowen, Germany etc

I mean, I know no one is really worrying about this or hardly paying attention, but I have a strange obsession with documenting all the inbound mail, as well as often making videos of me simply chatting whilst putting the treats into scrapbooks – which kind of misses the point and I should just spend the time scribbling more letters.

However, i recently sent out six glorious bundles of a book which combines fine art, exquisite paper craft, time travel, astral projection, interactivity, and story of love, love, love and friendship across time, zones, islands, continents, and fictions – and I did it all without taking a snapshot of the luscious stack (which also included inscriptions featuring my new inky stamps). It’s all very exciting to me.

*And* when I went to my local post office – where I used to be a regular visitor however this year I’ve slowed down significantly for various reasons – my favourite employee was there to greet me and help me with significant excitement and enjoyment as we chose the stamps for each one plus, I showed her the well-traveled 11 month journey postcard to India, and she in return, told me about new postal regulations for sending packages to all countries which go into affect September. (Oh great… More complications :(, fortunately does not affect letters and postcards, so I’ll stick with those standards (aerogrammes seem to go missing) so you’re out of luck on international packages friendo.

However, onwards the inbound pile, there’s been so many interesting arrivals so while I am restraining myself from documenting everything and saying to self its fine just documenting a few things. Cool with you? Great. Let’s make a start:

What do Fred Rogers, Andy Warhol, Albert Einstein and the Heinz family have in common? Thanks to Tim Tulloch & family in CT for the great card packed full of stories all interlinked in the most unlikely ways.

A talisman of friendship across continents, oceans – circumstances often running parallel across astral planes. We continue to create in solidarity, collaboration (accidental or otherwise), constant creativity, cross-medium communication and unabashed affection with and from Andrew McLuhan (who has faced significant personal challenges and started/completed/attempted so many multidisciplinary projects, while keeping the legacy of his father and grandfather even more relevant… All of the above for which I have massive admiration)

2 fortunate correspondents enjoying the correspondence from Bowen Island with usual enthusiasm (hooray for ice cream on the dock!)

Ichiro *reading* this dispatch from my birthday twin in Germany, in his words was mostly about “dinosaurs, water bikes and stanely park and the number 7” Danke Astrid-san.

Arriving miraculously timed directly on my birthday, although without that specific intention, came this beautiful envelope from someone who is a semi-professional letter/card writer, stamp creator, community builder, and always includes very enjoyable paper craft in her dispatches from Austin TX (a city I used to visit so often and loved so gently)

And another exceptionally thoughtful friend who’s family faced many challenges from operations to hurricanes over the last, while you took the time to send a birthday card, which hit all the marks with luscious paper, lovely quote, and a glorious tree. Thank you to the palmy desert.

this quirky artwork arrived from a friend. I haven’t met yet (thinking about it, many of my correspondence fall into this category) who also lives in Japan and it seems to have a very interesting variety of skills from sketching to music. {It’s a really fantastic painting and remind me of another, we saw during the van Gogh exhibit in an adjacent gallery… its around here somewhere… oh here it is}

sorry don’t know the artist’s name

These “Fantastic” stickers were included with a very heartfelt and private typed letter, on luscious letterhead, describing an experience at a regional burning man type event, in which the writer set up a “post office” and delivered analogue communication from various camps to camps… That part doesn’t sound very personal, but anyway, here’s related stickers as a placeholder for this tender letter.

A young –I guess he’s no longer that “young” – Sri Lankan correspondent made a trip to India, I believe his first international adventure about which he was understandabl excited, and from this journey came a postcard featuring the mystic Sai Baba, whose movement/commune/corp makes the exquisite Nag Champa incense.

The same un-young fella sent another card on his return to Sri Lanka, the stamps/cancellation are included for your enjoyment in comparison. Learn more about Rasika and his postcards.

Also, no longer particularly “young” but of course, still youthful and in my eyes always a keen speaker, comes a postcard from Ireland (on a honeymoon with an exceptional decision). {Funny, all the places I’ve rambled, Ireland, and Scotland, and Norway, which are the origin points of much of my heritage are still unvisited. The good news is, those can wait as they’re relatively “easy” compared to some of the places of my rambles.} ty J&V, come visit

From another place, I have yet to visit and probably one not on the usual “tourist trap” these days – comes a lovely message from a Canadian, usually living in Vietnam but at this time in Ukraine (and soon to be in Japan). Note to self: give him a call

This fantastically well-travelled postcard, was harvested somewhere from the internets (Twitter?), but I have forgotten whom to credit so… if this is you, ‘thank you for sharing your remarkable artifact’ which seems to have leapfrog continents and hopefully eventually found a recipient (hooray for the incredible neural net work of postal services!)

My friend Katherine in Vic BC passed along this very cool “4 Sen” stamp from a bundle picked up at Smithsonian Postal Museum – I know that somehow along the way, the yen was all re-valuated as now 4 Sen (which means ¥4000) is about $40 CAD and in the old-timey movies, the money denominations seem to be all juggled up anyway, I just like the stamp. TY

One of us is very cool and nonchalant, the other is may be too excited, but, regardless, this is a fantastic postbox located on the 6th floor courtyard of a department store next to a hidden post office. I don’t understand the story behind at all but I’m always unusually excited when I have a chance to drop something in here and take the obligatory snapshot (you’ll find others with the same cheesy pose elsewhere no doubt).

Bonus!

New inky stamps and visit from a pal led to a postcard making session at a coffee shop (yes, my favourite thing to do) and, since I love trams/trolleys, combined it all with a note from a friend mailed to my own house. Doesn’t everyone do this? {the kanji characters say – from top to bottom: Tsuchida, Okayama, Japan + the postbox might well be modelled on the one above.

Snaps: additions to usual collections (phone, postbox, ship, stamps and coffee)

Compiling usual additions to standard collections, ergo:

* rotary phone (black, functional) at Tereya Cafe

* postbox (6th floor of dept store courtyard)

* wooden ship (hotel lobby with cutty sark booze)

* ink stamp rally checkpoint (at a traveling aquarium)

* coffee (Hawaiian Lion at hotel)

Post’d: new year mail-outs / postal odds and ends (& what happens next)

A well decorated special new year dropbox at a post office on a quest with my buddy Mac

“Good news” is over 300 pieces of postal mail dispatched the last 4-5 weeks. Mostly postcards but also bunch of special packets (some were far overdue) + typed (poorly) a few long letters – still a few more on my list and then have to pause / slow down for a while.

One of the batches, heading out internationally with some fantastic (specially ordered) 70¥ stamps, celebrating an anniversary of Japan and France, postal relations, along with air mail seals (and a CD received from a friend in Fukushima)
On a drive to visit an arborist colleague, in another town, spotted a couple post boxes from the car, and just couldn’t resist myself since we were at a red light, seemed like fate
There was a lot of red ink, stamping, because well of course we have our own “year of the rabbit” stamps, so wore out the previous red ink pad (which I really really liked) and ordered a new one, yeah it’s really the big time
Have acquired at least a dozen free calendars and placed each appropriately throughout the house, and in this case, in the kura (to be clear, there’s also one in the carport/workshop)
Of course, this dude was helping out with the stamping
Along with the “usual” high volume of standard New Year’s cards, were a few special dossiers, sent to folks needing a little spark, due to being shut, ins, hospitalized, suffering, loss, or otherwise did something very special. an opportunity to share some of my little arts and crafts to maybe inspire others.
Though our dear rabbit Maru-chan is featured on the new year card – because of course it is “year of the rabbit” – sadly, my design skills squished him in and he was often covered by a stamp required for postal delivery. I attempted to apologize and explain the situation – he just wants to sit by the fire. I think we’ll both be all right.
Thank you to all our wonderful correspondents, both sending and receiving is a pleasure

The next “big project” is getting ready for a trip #BCInvasion in April/May. Focus is “family, friends, parks, and gardens” 1st time for my darlings, and I’m a little intimidated to deal with lack of public toilets, tax/tips and other social connections, but will get through it. And yes, of course I’ve made a Google doc plan and “poster art”.

Kurashiki corner with postbox, phone booth + several bonus items

I love it when you find an “double“ with postbox and phone booth (with phone book) side-by-side / in this case in historic Bikan district in Kurashiki, Okayama, Japan.

For bonus is the logo of the fantastic “black cat“ Yamato courier service and an official post office mark + safety cone, duo-lingual stop sign, resto menu board, electrical box & weary potted plant.

Its all happening, here, now. Wait. Stop. Go anywhere!

(And yes, I have folders filled with post office and postbox and payphone photos just waiting for more purposes, meanwhile working on poetry projects)

Postbox / 4 views: Yumeji Takehisa home & atelier (for #postboxsaturday)

For #postboxsaturday comes 4 views of Japan pillar style at (one of several) museums for famed artist (painter, print maker, poet, writer, bookbinder and illustrator) Yumeji Takehisa (1884-1934).

In the gift shop or a wide assortment of postcards and postal stamps design from the artists work. What kind of dream is this right?!

This dapper gent is noted for his modern approaches and expanding traditional techniques and representing – especially women & cats – through the “rather enlightened romantic“ Taisho era – which was sandwiched between the massive industrialization of Meiji era and the militarization build-up of early Showa era.

Continue reading Postbox / 4 views: Yumeji Takehisa home & atelier (for #postboxsaturday)

Postbox: Matsue, Shimane, Japan (for #postboxsaturday)

A very unique Japan PostBox for #PostboxSaturday

This black beauty is in Matsue, Shimane outside the former residence, next to museum of renowned international, multi-genre writer: Lafcadio Hearn.

He is a total hero for me and others – his roots and branches run deep and wide with roots in Ireland & Greece and sojourns in New Orleans and Caribbean before moving to Japan and taking a Japanese name Koizumi Yakumo.

{If curious, I have a dossier about Lafcadio Hearn with more snapshots and annotations}

Memo: As it goes, i have hundreds of snapshots of postboxes, post offices, and “postal still life” (meaning scenes of scattered pens, papers, postcards, stationery, stamps – all spread over a table while in a session) and i use these for Postcards from Gravelly Beach podcast “episode art” and made a book from many of the artifacts.

Of late, some Instagram/Twitter folks have a #postboxsaturday campaign/project rolling so i’ve used this as encouragement to start trickling out my stash. Slowly and intermittently (because i have too many projects on the go!) with minor annotations.

Postboxes + Post Office: Sri Lanka x 3 (for #postboxsaturday)

“Well it’s already well into #postboxsaturday in Japan, and Sri Lanka as well, so here’s a trio of snaps & boxes from around Galle & Karapitiya iirc”

Memo: As it goes, i have hundreds of snapshots of postboxes, post offices, and “postal still life” (meaning scenes of scattered pens, papers, postcards, stationery, stamps – all spread over a table while in a session) and i use these for Postcards from Gravelly Beach podcast “episode art” and made a book from many of the artifacts.

Of late, some Instagram/Twitter folks have a #postboxsaturday campaign/project rolling so i’ve used this as encouragement to start trickling out my stash. Slowly and intermittently (because i have too many projects on the go!) with minor annotations.

Postboxes + Post Office: Katsuyama, Okayama, Japan (for #postboxsaturday)

“Just hanging out by a beautiful pillar #Postbox with a fantastic noren curtain in historic Katsuyama, Okayama, Japan for #PostboxSaturday #PostBoxesOfTheWorld

yes i am cheesing out, with a jaunty pose but i mean, look how great it all is!

More: same cheesy pose, same town, same different box, different day along Katsuyama historic “preserved” street

Even More: same town, 2 snaps of another pillar at Katsuyama Station and another cheesy pose by a standard issue box by the actual post office in Yubara, Katsuyama

Continue reading Postboxes + Post Office: Katsuyama, Okayama, Japan (for #postboxsaturday)