From The Postcard Diaries – May 29, 2021
By Mark Mothersbaugh
Published Issue 091, July 2021
Excerpt from The Bob Rauschenberg Gallery at FSW for Postcards for Democracy:
The Bob Rauschenberg Gallery at FSW is honored to announce the premiere of Mark Mothersbaugh and Beatie Wolfe’s collective art campaign, Postcards for Democracy, on display through August 8, 2021.
The resulting Gallery exhibition is expansive, immersive and participatory, but the concept continues to be quite simple: create and mail your postcard design to 8760 Sunset Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90069 to become part of this art demonstration and in doing so support USPS and democracy in the process.
Artistic visionaries Mark Mothersbaugh and Beatie Wolfe – who share a love of tangible art-forms, in and amongst their futuristic explorations – joined forces to create Postcards for Democracy, a collective art campaign in support of the United States Postal Service (USPS) and its essential role in our elections.
The pair have received thousands of cards to date covering themes such as covid, democracy, capitalism, the environment, social injustice, science and even insomnia. Together these postcards (like the exhibition itself) form something of a time capsule – reflecting our collective experience personally, socially, societally, politically, and environmentally – while the archive expands with ongoing contributions
Mark Mothersbaugh is a Conceptualist. As an undergraduate art student at Kent State University, Mark began creating work in the late 60’s and has created tens of thousands of works to the current day in various mediums including, rubber stamp designs, mail art, decals, prints, ink illustrations, oil paintings, ceramic sculptures, manipulated photographs, video, film compositions, sonic sculptures, rugs, screen savers and so on.
While touring with his band DEVO, it was not uncommon for Mark to lightly “correct” or add onto the bland paintings and prints that adorned the many hundreds of otherwise unmemorable hotel rooms that he occupied for one night at a time. Using a van, bus, hotel room, airplane, or any space as his workspace, he has created over 40,000 drawings which serve as the genesis of ideas that later emerge in his larger projects.
Mark views much of his work as experiments in “beatnik-stream of consciousness” poetry, which to him, is related to speaking in tongues; the surrendering of the intellect to the primordial, or science vs. faith
An observer among us, Mark writes down things that he overhears throughout the day … people at another table, a voice on the radio, pieces of verbal fabric that drift and weave and create the poetry of life, the flotsam and jetsam that swirl around us and fill our subconscious with scraps of what it is to be, according to Mark, a “thinking ape.”