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As the world went into lockdown a distanced dialogue emerged. An urgency to retain a sense of connectedness in a culture of cancellations and postponed projects spurred a collaborative foot forward. This month TRG unveils a new collection, the culmination of a mail art project that began in early March. The exhibition presents the work of 18 artists who exchanged works and ideas, sustaining contact in the midst of far reaching distancing measures. Following a loose variation on the "exquisite corpse" format, artists sent each other partially finished works in concealed portions with the next artist developing the work. In a chain of participation and exchange, this communal act of making art played a relevant role in channelling these exceptional times.
Taking cues from the rich history of collaborative mail art projects executed by the likes of Ray Johnson in the 60s; Matthew Higgs’ Imprint 93 project in the 90’s; Moyra Davey’s ‘mailer works’; and Raymond Pettibon & Marcel Dzama’s 'Forgetting The Hand’ project in 2015; the exhibition consists of a collection of 6 final works on paper and an assortment of postal materials that document the project. Artists sent works from all corners of the UK, to the US, and into Europe. Some artists sent works to friends, others to strangers, others used the opportunity to maintain connection with people where lockdown intensifies already precarious circumstances. For example, Barry Reigate sent his work via Carneys Community, an outreach program for disadvantaged and excluded young people in South London. 10% of sales will be donated to Carneys Community. A letter written by Ella Fleck accompanies the exhibition.