It's not often we find ourselves writing letters these days, let alone love letters, but that's exactly what artist Matthew Rose is asking anyone with a pen, paper, envelope and stamp to do for his exhibition "The Letters," which will be held from July 5 to Aug. 31 at Converge Gallery, 140 W. Fourth St.
The American artist, who lives and works in Paris, France, has conceived of an exhibition that is largely dominated with letters, postal ephemeral, words, texts and pictures that are notes and messages to other people, some fictional, some real exploring and reporting via letters on a variety of subjects from love and death and the National Rifle Association and suicide notes in cast-away bottles, to a 10-volume set of books titled, you guessed it, "Matthew Rose: The Letters (The Early Years, Dirty Work, Assorted Scandals, etc)."
In this particular work, the artist is asking artists and writers and lovers the world over to write letters and mail them to the gallery.
The unopened letters will be displayed for visitors to see and to take with them, unopened. Matthew Rose, known for his full-on collage installations and large mail art exhibitions, also is the artist/curator of the global project "A Book About Death," a worldwide ongoing exhibition of mail art works on the subject of death. Here, though, Rose turns to love.
"Unopened love letters touching upon all notions of love - unrequited, fulfilled, missed, forgotten, ongoing, funny, sad, tragic - would be a beautiful homage not just to love but to writing, that somewhat lost art we all used to be engaged in," Rose said. "Largely anonymous, the letters will connect people in an abstract way, and the tension evoked will be potent and mysterious. It's not unlike finding a love letter in an old library book. Those emotions are universal and powerful."
The artist adds that each love letter will be rubber stamped with a special logo for the exhibition.
Interested writers and lovers of all ages and all places should feel free to send their love letters (from now until 25 August) to:
c/o Converge Gallery
140 W. Fourth St., Williamsport, Pa., 17701
For more information about Matthew Rose, visit convergegallery.com.
The letters will be posted daily on Tumblr: thelettersbymatthewrose.tumblr.com,