Ok, I stand here, egg all over my face, corrected.
As an (old) art educator (also as one who participated in Mailart and
other Idea Art activities in the early 70's), I am interested in your
project. However, I would also hope that those participating in it
understand that there is an interesting tradition for this kind of
expression. One would also hope that the students who are involved in your
event will understand that the seemingly irrational activity will need to
formulate a solid idea underneath the objects they create. I would hope
that the project would give rise to classroom discussions about the multiple
values which are placed upon an art object and even if the art they create
has no value as an object, a significant idea or a significant art making
process can give rise to other kinds of values for the work.
May I play the devil's advocate, here.
If your project requires that the children create a collage from "junk mail"
and then send it back into the mail, could you outline just what you see as
the objectives of the lesson for them.
Will the children learn anything about Dada, Duchamp, Cubism (collage),
thirty years of reactions to the control of the art market by business
forces or other conceptual directions in some of our art over the past
Are the youngsters old enough to formulate a solid idea which will give
significance to their work? The anti-(traditional) art posturing of Dada
and related developments is often quite confusing to experienced artists and
college level students. How will the kids come away from your project with
anything other then confusion or, worse, a sense of art as being trivial.
In this conceptual tradition, emphasis upon traditional concerns of form
(elements and principles) in the creation of the objects will not overcome
the lack of an idea or significant content underneath the production of the
Well, I hope the project is a good event and I hope that more learning then
confusion comes from your project.