I inherited my Dad’s boyhood stamp collection. When I was a kid, sorting the stamps, deciphering foreign names of countries, identification… it was a treasure hunt. To me the stamps were miniature works of art, exquisitely detailed, hinting at history and events beyond my awareness. They evoked travel – would I ever see the places where this slip of paper had originated? These stamps encouraged my inquisitiveness, and my desire to learn, to experience…
|One of the containers…|
I still have the stamps. I let go of the bulky book that was largely blank pages… Dad never really took to the whole hobby thing, and I didn’t make huge progress in filling the pages either. I have stamps from countries that no longer exist. Its a window into history, a link to the past – both mine and the world’s.
|Folk costumes from Poland, report Greek myth stamps from Greece,
Classical monochromatic beauties from France, a few gems from down under.
|A childhood favorite – Austrian farm girl; florals from Hungary, USSR, Gabon, Congo, San Marino;
Czech flora and fauna; Irish blackbird.
|Simple stamp under resin; three new mixed media pieces – mother-of-pearl bezels and copper/brass backings.|
These polymer pieces debuted at Beadfest last August. The settings are molds made from vintage stampings. Resin seals and secures the stamp image. The polymer color palettes are drawn from the stamp art itself. ( I’ll be teaching a similar class* at Beadfest in April.)
|Polymer focals showcasing stamps, sealed with resin. ( Mexico, USA, Italy, Malaysia)
And a ring, a class sample, just for fun.
|Souvenir ‘stamps’ from the National Gallery of Art. I adore Matisse!
I’ve been holding onto this sheet for… umm… over 25 years!
|Current stamps in circulation. Images from USPS.com|
As of June 2014, the stamp has raised over $78.9 million for breast cancer research. By law, 70 percent of the net amount raised is given to the National Institutes of Health and 30 percent is given to the Medical Research Program at the Department of Defense.Designed by Ethel Kessler of Bethesda, MD, the stamp features the phrases, “Fund the Fight” and “Find a Cure” and an illustration of a mythical “goddess of the hunt” by Whitney Sherman of Baltimore.
As an artist, I find the design process of stamps fascinating. They need to be easy to “read” from a distance, but rather detailed for their size. Many commemorate people, places, events, and some more recent motifs raise funds for research and conservation. The USPS site/store lists these and more available for purchase. And – for artwork they are rather affordable. ( As stamps, they are kind of expensive… LOL)
Have you ever considered stamps as art? As jewelry? I’d love to hear how you put your ‘stamp’ on things. (Had to do it… )