"Reading the commendations of nowadays to the Internet and investigating the individual websites, we remembered that the mailartists has been making the same activity 10, 20 and, sometimes, from 30 years ago. The decentralization of the art and the communication to distance from the art centers of the world, in charge of the artist-s-mail, they happened many before the World Wide Web".
Fagagaga, 15 of Nov.´99, personal letter
The things don't happen scatteredly, all are linked. The art in the Net of nowadays is not casual and it is originated, certainly, in Mail Art. Who have been the objectives of the art mail from its beginnings in the first experiences of Ray Johnson of half-filled of the 60s, but the communication and the interation? Ray sent unconcluded works to his friends so that they ended them. Born from that original project, nowadays the Mail Art, already at the end of century, preserve with great difficulty its force and its impulse in spite of the changes caused by the scientific and technological advances and the foregone absorption of the market. It is true that so much years of validity have weakened that
remotion of values and that today a growing institutionalization, absorption and banalitization are attended, on the part of the stablisment, of the principles that consecrated to the communication like only representative of our art, above the inconstant and whimsical artistic fashions, the more than the times imposed by the market of the art. The decentralization of the art is an implicit phenomenon in the art mail because a current of artistic specific expression centralized in an is not "ism" (like Surrealism or Abstraccionism, etc.) but of an artistic form that admits any half or support and any aesthetic well-known current and by knowing: "The Eternal Network" of Robert Filliou, the utopian project, perhaps unreachable, of the permanent communication of all through all the available means.
Even we suffer the confusion or false contradiction betwen art and communication. The artistic product is, above all, a product of communication and therefore part inseparable of the social production. On the other hand, the same as the rest of the products that the man creates, is constituted in aiding of that same production (upon favoring or hinder its processes). In some contexts its nature "artistic" will prevail (museums, galleries, classes, etc.). In another one its nature of instrument of communication will prevail. But, both facets are inseparable. In this particular form of art (since it is a symbolic form of expressing our reality) prevails the value of use above the merely mercantile or of change. The components of relationship of communication (or fatics) prevail and predispose to the talkative act.
There is, perhaps, the reasons of its persistense like current of artistic expression: it don't take place for the market of the art, for which it isn´t sold neither there are juries that select the works, neither limits in relation to the techniques employees neither in relation to the currents of ideological expression or aesthetics, not refund, etc. Neither interests the artistic, either literary gender, plastic, musical, even the own presence of the mail-artist could be considered as talkative act (like Turism Art, derived of the Mail Art), etc. Lastly, neither there is categories neither elites, neither upper-class neither beginners, neither leaders neither submissive, neither obligations of no nature. One could enter and leave from the nets of communication without no problem. However, fruit of the progressive merchandising of the Mail Art is begun already to appear groups of artist-s-mail that, with the pretext of conserving and improve the aesthetic levels and of assuring the edition of good catalogs, they are organizing exhibitions for invitation sponsoreds for Galleries and Institutions applied to the market of the art.
Would Networking (name that adopts the Mail Art upon adding another means of communication to distance like fax and electronic mail), be pointing out the new road that will travel the art of the 2000 in order to resume its primary function of communication to the service of the community, before the money and the merchandising come to corrupt those tacit mechanisms? Nowadays, many critics are surprised of the character masive and interactive of the art that is generated in the Wegsites, without knowing that those nets and those characteristics already existed from ends of the 60s., in the artistic work of those pioneers that saw in the communication to distance or Mail Art the means for which diffuse their ideals of understanding between all in a climate of respect, happiness and worthy life. Who don't remember those booklets or postcards that we arrived with the application that you will add something and pass to other artists in the net (the "add and pass on") or those postcards to which should we make give the turn to the world through the mail conserving the postals stamps and the postmark? Or the incomplete leaves of stamps of apocryphal mail that we should complete? Or the accusations against the violation of the human rights and against the outrage of the dictatorships? And the exhibitions in pro of the freedom of political prisoners (like, for example, Mandela in the 70s.) or for the right to the sovereignty enslaved of the countries (like, for example, Cuba and Panama), etc.? And many, many other projects. In fact the interactivity and the communication are the foundations that sustain the nets of Mail Art. And those basic characteristics have been transmitted the Networking and to the Art in the Weg.