Going back to the wonderful and frightening world of the Internet, I post today on what you should do with that other thing with which the internet changed our lifes: an enduring, almost liquid flow of spam.
Did you ever get a letter like the following?
I am Monica Maxwell from Libya. I am married to Late Jamil Maxwell of blessed memory who is an oil explorer in Libya and Kuwait for twelve years before he died in the year 2000. We were married for twelve years without a child. He died after a brief illness that lasted for only four days. Since his death I too have been battling with both Cancer and fibroid problems. When my late Husband was alive he deposited a substantial amount of money in millions of dollars with a Finance Firm oversea. Recently, my doctor told me that I have only six months to live due to cancer problem. Though what disturbs me most is my stroke sickness. Having known my condition I decided to donate this fund to either a charity/orphanage home or devoted God fearing individual that will utilize this money the way I am going to instruct herein. I want this organization or individual to use this money in all sincerity to fund charity homes (motherless homes), orphanages, widows. I took this decision because I don’t have any child that will inherit this money and my husband relatives are into radical organisation and I don’t want a situation where this money will be used in an Unholy manner. Hence the reasons for this bold decision. Please, pray for me to recover as your prayers will go a long way in uplifting my spirit. I don’t need any telephone communication in this regard because of my health, because of the presence of my husband’s relatives around me always. I don’t want them to know about this development. As soon as I receive your reply, I shall give you further directives on what to do and how to goabout actualising this project. I will also issue a letter of authority to the Finance Company authorizing them that the said fund Have being willed to you and a copy of such authorization will be forwarded to you. I want you to always pray for me. Any delay in your reply will give room in sourcing for an organization or a devoted Individual for this same purpose. Until I hear from you by email, my dreams will rest squarely on your shoulders.
Mrs Monica Maxwell
As a bit of webarcheology will show, this letter was actually first sent on Tuesday Apr 5, 2005, at precisely 21:08:58. Most people would just trash it, irritated by such nuisance. But not the South African poet Allan Kolski Horowitz.
He picked the letter and transformed it into a witty and delicious short story and published it in the 12th issue of Chimurenga, a small and independent South African literary magazine.
Now, unexpectedly last November I could not attend the launch of an artist’s book that also deals with the beauty one can create out of one’s junk mail. Instead, I photocopied Horowitz story and send it in my place for a reading.
Now it is finally time to disclose a tiny bit of the intriguing images Vasco Barata produced for “Hard Coeur, Undisclosed Recipient,” the dashing book he recently produced as a limited artist edition.
There was already Andreas Gursky’s “Nudes,” a wicked book I once offered to a dear friend. Now Barata’s collages send the spam images he collected onto the sphere of the art historical sublime.
Unfortunately (or is it fortunately?), not all that glitters appears in the internet. If you want to see these images you will have to engage into the amazing collector’s quest of… finding the book’s hard couepy. Lol.