Art is what makes life so rich and beautiful. Sadly, it is too frequently a luxury for affluent individuals, pushing out the rest of us with an air of pretension and condescension. In reality, art is dynamic, omnipresent, and free. It does not need the validation of a rich collector or institution to make it legitimate. Most importantly, it should be for everyone. It should be for everyone not just to look at, but participate in.
That is why I created this project. I want to empower as many people as I can with their own ability to create and enjoy art, as well as each other. I love us, we are such beautiful, vivacious beings with the unique gift to create.
So far, I have left over 500 letters around the NYC area for people to find. Some were just tossed on the ground, some tucked away in a book, and some conspicuously tacked onto your school's bulletin board. Each letter implores the curious eye to "Open me!". Inside each letter is a love letter, as if it was from a long lost loved one. Also inside the letter, is an unfinished drawing. The writer asks the recipient to not only reconnect with them through a letter, but also through the completion of the drawing. To make this task easier on the already perplexed reader, there is a self-addressed envelope and stamp inside to mail the completed drawing to.
In my apartment, I have a cheap HP printer that I am using to print every letter, envelope, and drawing. Therefore, I go through a lot of ink. I also put a stamp on each self addressed envelope, which is quite expensive, approximately 42 cents a pop. Here is a breakdown of the materials I have used so far for the project and their costs. So far I have invested about $700 myself to get this project started.
*500 4'' by 9.5'' envelopes at 50 for $1 at the dollar store equals $10
*500 3.5'' by 6.5'' return envelopes at 65 for $1.50 at the dollar store equals about $12
*500 FOREVER stamps at $0.42 equals $210 at post office
*HP Photosmart All in One Inkjet Printer $99
*5 HP 60XL Black Ink Cartridges at $29.95 online plus shipping equals about $165
*5 HP 60XL Tricolor Cartridges at $29.95 online plus shipping equals about $165
*250 pack cardstock from Staples equals $17
*500 sheet ream multipurpose printing paper equals $12
*GoDaddy domain purchase for eternallyours.us equals $8
*GoDaddy webhosting for 1 yr equals $60
*P.O. Box rental for 6 months at a time equals $60
Unfortunately I have to print and distribute a lot of letters to get any back. I have been getting about a 5-10% return rate. That means a lot of letters and materials. Despite the odds against me, this project is very worthwhile. A lot of the letters I have received back said that the letter and project was just what he/she needed. Several respondents even wanted to help disperse letters themselves.
I want to keep this project going until I have at least 100 responses. Once I reach my goal, I hope to make a book in addition to the website to further inspire people to actively share and create with each other. I wish I had the resources to fund this on my own, but even with two jobs, one full time, they don't quite cover it.
If you would like to do even more than make a donation and help hide letters yourself in your own community please email me. I would be more than happy to send you a package of love.
Thank you so much for your support.
also feel free to email me for any other inquiries about this project.
- (46 days)