Reading the Mail: A MinneDaDa1984 Mail Art Show

MinneDaDa1984 is a "beyond-the-Fringe outsider arts festival" scheduled for several venues around Minneapolis August 11-14. A chaotic tribute to the 100thAnniversary of Dada (and  the 67th Anniversary of Orwell’s 1984), MinneDaDa1984 will feature local avant poets, noise artists, Fluxus performers, filmmakers, neo-Dadaists, and more, as well as like-minded out-of-town artists, including Ryosuke Cohen from Japan (whose Brain Cell body outline hangs at the Walker).

As part of this event, Tom Cassidy—an active member in the mail-art, underground and avant communities since the ‘70s—put out a call for Mail Art to be exhibited concurrent with the festival. To date, he has received over 100 pieces of snail-mail from over sixty artists (including pieces from the UK, Netherlands, Italy, Germany, Canada, and Japan). These works, which include colorful Dada and antiDada tributes, zines, collages, performance instructions, subversive and satiric wisdom, and a healthy dose of politically-engineered sanity, will be on display in binders and in the windows at Eat My Words from August 1 – 27.

Many of the pieces will be read Thursday, August 11, 7 p.m. at the bookstore as the opening salvo to the festival. Readers will include John M. Bennett, Scott Helmes, Ted King, C. Mehrl Bennett, Musicmaster, and special guest Ryosuke Cohen.

The event is free and open to all, but those expecting traditional narratives or helpful advice might be disappointed. Information about other MinneDaDa1984 events is available at Eat My Words.