1976. Fan Clubs by tENTATIVELY, a cONVENIENCE
Starting in the fall of 1978 I got involved with what's generally called "Mail Art". I never liked that term because I don't like the term "art" as a category for creativity. As such, I preferred called myself a "PIN-UP" for "Postal Interaction Network - Underground Participant". Within Mail Art one might say that there're various threads: one of the most common is people who just try to get their name out there as much as possible by submitting generally theme-irrelevant work to every Mail Art show they can find out about. A much smaller group of people that included myself & "Blaster" Al Ackerman was more inclined to pranking, using multiple identities, & more intense actual personal communication (rather than, say, sending out the same post-card with no personal message to thousands of people). At my peak, I was corresponding with 1,400 people & managing to keep track of who everyone was & what I sent them & what they sent me. The personal bureaucracy that I had to maintain to do this burnt me out so much it took the fun out of it. One of the many projects I had was to pretend that there was a fan club for everyone I was corresponding with. I would use a rubber stamp kit to make a stamp of their name followed by "fan club" & I would stamp it on a slew of envelopes. Everytime I'd create a new 'fan club' I'd add that stamp to whatever remained of this supply. Then when I'd send that person mail they'd see their own 'fan club' listed + all the other 'fan clubs' I was up to. The above image is of a sample envelope. People 'in the know' about who these people are will probably find the above list quite interesting.
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