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Claire Mooney, Translation, 2008, acrylic & thread on found card

messages from the past

19 AUGUST – 10 OCTOBER 2008



‘If you could send a message into the future what would it say’?

This exhibition presents a collection of small contemporary artworks created by five artists incorporating antique postcards, collected from second hand stores throughout Victoria.  Drawn to the historical, social and artistic importance of the postcard, I have invited teh artists to work with the format to create timely messages and mementos of their own.

In the past decade there has been a growing interest in collectable ephemeral scraps from previous generations that for years have been disposed of in cupboards, attics and garages and consigned to rubbish bins.  The collecting of the picture postcard has become increasingly popular.  In the past postcards were for most people, the nearest thing to immediate communication.  They were cheap to buy and post and became bright spots in the lives of many people who might never have moved beyond the few square kilometers around their homes. The messages were always brief, concise and public, and the card provided a convenient souvenir of places visited and remembered.

Today postcards serve a similar purpose, some convey promises of undying love, thoughts of hope and best wishes, while others pledge to end war, drought, poverty and global warming. Many are sent to children too young to read by grandparents that will never live to see them become adults. Young adults use them as templates for their expression of thoughts, deep fears and desires that will continue live on throughout their uncertain and fragile lifetimes.

Always touching, mostly hopeful and occasionally hilarious, whatever the message postcards all have one thing in common: a desire to send a piece of oneself into the future.

Patrick Pound is represented by GRANTPIRRIE, Sydney. Mary Newsome & Heather Shimmen are represented by GALLERY 101, Melbourne.

POSTCARDS  – winner Best Curated Exhibition NEXT WAVE FESTIVAL, Melbourne 2008.