MinXus Mail Bag: Trashbook from Eduardo Cardoso (Sines, Portugal)

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Mail-art by Eduardo Cardoso (Sines, Portugal)

Last year Eduardo Cardoso’s Trashometry created a stir in the Trashpo as well as larger mail-art communities. Eduardo was accordingly awarded a much-coveted TrashPo Litzer Prize. In the wake of the acclaim, he produced More Trashometry, which we are thrilled to unveil and document here.

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More Trashometry follows the successful formula of it predecessor, yet refinements have been made. First, note the knotted string binding, which works very well. Eduardo Cardoso is committed to recycling in the work (central to Trashpo ideology) and chose to use newspaper advertising pages as the foundation for a series of vispo-geometric overlays.

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In our estimation, Eduardo Cardoso is a very talented visual and concrete poet. Seeing him work with Trashpo is fascinating. The advertising provides colour and images. Enlarged words that are fragmented and obscured are also abundant and, we think, provide an important textual level to More Trashometry. The book’s text can be read in several ways.

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At the IUOMA, Eduardo coordinates the popular minimal mail-art group, which he established. The creation of the group corresponded with an interest in minimalism reflected in his own work. While More Trashometry is undeniably dense in terms of image and text, Eduardo’s interest in minimalism is evident. You can see it in the tendency toward reduction: words and phrases are reduced to smaller components, sometimes single or partial letters. We see an effort to reduce language rather than, for instance, trying to build a narrative by weaving text together; advertising copy is not conducive to that kind of work. Thus, More Trashometry draws from minimalist concrete poetry.

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The center section of the book showcases the inlaid pieces, which are often geometric structures that include words and letters. In the original Trashometry, the geometric shapes were more (we can only think to call it) theoretical/abstract and to a degree distorted and/or incomplete. Eduardo Cardoso seems to be striving in this later edition for more precision and accuracy in the execution of the shapes. The optical interest and presence of an engaging imagination persist.

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The advertising copy provides a popart quality with comic book colours but also downplays particular textual aspects.

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The minimalist concrete poetry presence that has been integrated into More Trashometry is very apparent on the left-hand page. As with much Trashpo, the book also has a haptic and three-dimensional quality that cannot easily be shared through a scan.

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Back cover of More Trashometry by Eduardo Cardoso (Sines, Portugal)

Trashpo (trash poetry) is a form of visual poetry and differs from collage constructed from found material. The main point of difference, or a crucial area of composition and expression, is the close preoccupation with language. Eduardo Cardoso has focused on, even gloried in, the anti-art and recycling aspects of Trashpo. Thus, readers more used to seeing visual and concrete poetry that is presented with an eye to the aesthetic might not at first recognize the – dare way say – sophisticated presence of minimalist concrete poetry and text-image experimentation present in More Trashometry.

Here at MinXus-Lynxus, we congratulate Eduardo on this superb work that will wow the Trashpo folks as well as members of the vispo contingent with a discerning eyes.

Bonus: Eduardo Cardoso’s Repeat Until

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Mail-art by Eduardo Cardoso (Sines, Portugal)

Eduardo also sent Repeat Until, a much more conceptually based book that is yet another example of his minimalism. Except for the trash foundation, the work is blank, consisting of 12 pages. Here is a representative example of the content:

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A real treat, though, are the stamps on the back cover:

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Many thanks to Eduardo for these fantastic books!


1 Comment (+add yours?)

  1. DK
    Jun 06, 2013 @ 03:05:32

    very breakthrough stuff by Eduardo. He has been quiet as well lately, but I received something from him today–a very interesting assortment of classic Eduardian pieces


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