MinXus Mail Bag: This is not MinXus. This is Trashpo by Claire Dinsmore (Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, USA)

Claire - Trashpo - 1

Narrative Trashpo Social Realism by Claire Dinsmore (Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, USA)

Miss Claire Dinsmore aka “Cleo” created a stir not long ago with her “Guess Who’s Coming to Dinner?” mail-art that was delivered both to the Mink Ranch and the esteemed personage of our former acquaintance Mr. Grigori Antonin. Miss Claire’s work, perhaps best viewed as a comparative study of rodent anatomy, seems to suggest a relationship between the mink and the common rat. MinXus-Lynxus emphatically denies the suggestion, but we understand the belief is firmly held in other quarters.

Among many other artistic and literary pursuits, Miss Claire is experimenting with Trashpo, although she contends “Trashpo Jesus” Jim Leftwich did not invent the genre. She proposes another school of thought: Schwitterspo. Regardless, she sent us this work that – in terms of Trashpo – we consider innovative.

The envelope we received contained a plastic bag into which, it seems from our perspective, Miss Claire neatly folded and economically stuffed the contents of her waste basket.

Claire - Trashpo - 2

In addition to junk mail and postal debris we believe we detect the refuse from Miss Claire’s art projects. Bravo! One of the most redeeming aspects of Trashpo, or so we believe, is its commitment to recycling. Making art from art trash (or art surplus) is laudatory indeed. Making use of our pioneering scannerbed composition method (now being copied by everyone!), we combined the material Miss Claire sent and thus become collaborators in the interactive piece.

Claire - Trashpo - 3

Miss Claire Dinsmore favours longer Trashpo works (as compared to the usual postcard-size fare) that is meant to be assembled and disassembled by the recipient. From another point of view, she creates a narrative rather than lyric Trashpo. The permutations of variant sign structures and the assemblage and deconstructive metaphorical possibilities of the work make this, firmly, visual poetry. Additionally, we view Trashpo as the ultimate realism and a viable form of social realism.

In this work, Miss Claire is the main character and that character is defined by the refuse around her. The Trashpo allows us to view her life in the capitalist system, her social and organizational connections, forces that imperil her individualism, her struggle as an artist within the system, the artificial culture that threatens to engulf her, and much more. A truly moving work. Here is the envelope:

Claire - Trashpo - 4

Magnificent! And the reverse:

Claire - Trashpo - 5

Many thanks to Miss Claire Dinsmore for this thought-provoking work!


2 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Cleo
    Dec 17, 2012 @ 18:46:28

    Just read it: man can you write: you are soooo frigging good! Tanks again cher! “Social Realism” – very interesting ’cause though humorous, very apt indeed. Also funny because most of the stuff I enclosed I chose on purpose for you/trashpo – very literal and very un-me. That is, I didn’t like a lot of it/’twas ugly in my eyes & I wanted to see it transformed via new context… ‘Twas up to you, and you came through w/ flying colours, as it were. Congrats cher! (Wish you had scanned the original Japanese comics envelope/bag though :(…)


  2. minkrancher
    Dec 17, 2012 @ 22:59:52

    Miss Claire, Dw is fixin to use them fancy scraps. You aint seen the last of ’em.

    Now we aint jokin entirely either when we talk about this work as “Social Realism,” as we took the idea from Mr. George Maciunas hisseff.


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