R.B. Russell

The Postcard: A Voyage of Discovery. Curated by Dr Gail-Nina Anderson

Exhibited at Newcastle's prestigous Literary and Philosophical Institute, this exhibition is curated by art historian Gail-Nina Anderson.


Rather than tracing the history of the postcard, it plunders Gail-Nina's cherished collection to reveal the pleasures of collecting, selecting, comparing and just wondering why some postcards were ever printed in the first place. Each large frame on the walls of the show offers a theme of its own. There are vintage views of Newcastle, but also frames of elephants, glamour girls, cats, ghosts, toys and waxworks. There are frames for specific occasions and cards that make you wonder why they were ever produced, cards that offer recipes and cards that enshrine things no longer to be seen. There are also more personal examples from the period when family photos were often printed up in postcard format and sent as such, offering us the real faces, clothes and settings of the past. Odd formats, strange sentiments, unexpected effects and inexplicable selections are displayed alongside some really appealing cards! It's all a matter of taste, and every postcard reflects someone's idea of a desirable image, selected, manipulated and presented via a familiar, more-or-less standardised format.


This show is a voyage of discovery, a little trek through those surprisingly wide possibilities that can be sent with a stamp, don't need an envelope and yet open up all kinds of windows.


Copyright Tartarus Press, 2019