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What Are Artist Stamps? How Are Postal Service Stamps Created?

The Rickie Report has long been fascinated by the majestic artwork that appears on postage stamps the world over.  In this article, we bring you that information as well as a novel look at creating “artist stamps”.  Ginny Lloyd is a master of all stamp art. This Jupiter resident shares her fascination, knowledge and some examples of “artistamps” from her international collection.  What is our point?  Art is all around us to explore, if we just take the time.











"Body of Glass" by Ginny Lloyd

“Body Like Glass ” by Ginny Lloyd



• I was always making things as a kid in the more domestic areas like sewing, weaving, paper dolls, coloring, and making framed insect and butterfly pictures. For my birthday and Christmas presents, I asked for books on art by Van Gogh. In college I had an opportunity to use a darkroom and bought a Nikon from a neighbor. At the same time I enrolled in a drawing class for non-art majors and discovered I could draw. This led to a long love of photography and art.




Escadores Press' "Burning Man"

Pescadore “Burning Man”

• I had been collecting stamps and always wondered about the people who made them and how they were made. When I discovered photos of Fluxus artists’ stamp works I was intrigued. I later saw a magazine ad for making photo stamps and tried it out. After that in 1979 I curated an exhibit with a section made up of artistamps and was exposed to more styles. I then began to make more works of my own using a collage format. I eventually made artistamps of my photography and computer graphics.


Lauren Welch's "Errors"

Lauren Welch’s “Errors”

• The first artist to produce an “artist’s stamp” is open to interpretation. Fine artists were commissioned to create advertising posters in collectible stamp form from the late 1800s, but none appear to have worked with the format outside the commercial or advertising context. In 1919, Dadaist Raoul Hausmann affixed a self-portrait postage stamp to a postcard. Karl Schwesig, while a political prisoner during World War II, drew a series of pseudo-stamps on the blank, perforated margins of postage stamp sheets, using colored inks. Some historians assert that this 1941 series, which illustrated life in a concentration camp, is typically accepted as the first true set of artist’s stamps. Robert Watts, a member of the Fluxus group, became the first artist to create a full sheet of [faux] postage stamps within a fine art context when he produced a perforated block of 15 stamps combining popular and erotic imagery in 1961. Regardless of its origins hundreds of artists make artistamps today.




Chew Whiggins

Carl Chew , “buZoni”



How Are Postage Stamps Made Today?

• To make your own artist stamps, go online and locate groups of people making this type of art or just start sending them on your mail or trade with other artists whose work you admire. Information is so much more available and easy to find now on the Internet. Check the Wiki page too for helpful info. I curate a collection posted online. Read about the requirements and if you want to participate send in your artistamps.




Jasfelter "Miraur"

Jasfelter “Miraur”






Ginny Lloyd's "Creative Thing"

 Creative Thing’s “Ginny Lloyd”



• EXILE is a pop-up artist’s bookstore that will migrate throughout several locations in Miami, spending approximately 4-6 weeks housed in every location. The bookstore is dedicated to raising awareness about artist’s publications and will serve as a platform for the exchange of ideas and projects grounded in the spirit of collaboration. Now, it will pop up at the Miami Book Fair, where it will be a relaxed atmosphere where people can come and browse, relax, mingle, and enjoy some of the events we have scheduled — readings, performances, live printing. It will be a lot of fun to gather a community together and share in our passion for print culture. The works in the lounge will not be all local, and not all books.




Ruchin's "Artist Stamp"

Gunther Ruch “Artist Stamp”



The book fair describes the EXILE offerings as performances, lectures, and workshops revealing the “radical history and legacy of artists’ publications. Yoko Ono will provide the wish trees (on which visitors tie their written wishes); Isis Miller will jump-start the Flash Poetry Mob; and naturally, Dada and Fluxus will be discussed.




For more information please contact:

Gina Lotta Post Artistamp Museum and Archive
P.O. Box 1424
Jupiter, FL 33468
Facebook: Gina Lotta Post Artistamp Museum and Archive
Twitter: ArtistampMuseum




For coverage of your events, to place an advertisement, or speak to Rickie about appearing in The Rickie Report, contact The Rickie Report at:

Rickie Leiter, Publisher

The Rickie Report

P.O.Box 33423

Palm Beach Gardens, FL 33420



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