Frankie Lanes art installation titled, Youve Got Mail recently opened at Chashamas West 37th Street Gallery in New York City. Frankie Lane works in various media including photography, collage, painting, video, and music. Youve Got Mail celebrates the thousands of years of complex mail delivery systems from messenger pigeons to the modern-day USPS and the creative spirit of those people receiving mail. The installation space is filled with large-scale canvases of mailboxes enhanced with canceled stamps, mail bags line the floor and vintage letters with canceled stamps hang from twine dotting the walls.
Frankie Lane wants attendees to ponder the history and future of letter writing: When was the last time you put a pen to paper and mailed a letter? Has the cost and convenience of email killed the art of handwriting and letter writing? How many times does the letter change hands before it gets to the recipient? And what does the receiver of your letters mailbox look like? What does your own mailbox look like? Frankie Lane is fascinated by how many people express their creativity, profession, or favorite color in their choice of mailbox.
The Youve Got Mail installation had its premiere at the Chashama Gala 2021 with a costumed mailperson that encouraged letter writing by offering postcards with an image of mailboxes and pre-paid postage which were dropped into the mailbox. Hundreds of gala attendees took advantage of the opportunity to send postcards to friends.
Chashama was founded in 1995 by Anita Durst to celebrate the legacy of theatre visionary Reza Abdoh. Chashamas initial focus was on the production and presentation of new theatre. Recognizing that a lack of affordable space was the biggest threat to sustaining a diverse cultural environment in New York City, they began to work toward securing studio and presentation space in Midtown Manhattan for struggling artists by partnering with Property Owners that provide unused space to Chashama. In the first decade, they secured seven locations on 42nd street between 6th and Broadway, presenting over 700 shows.
Since then, they have moved from midtown Manhattan to the 5 boroughs and beyond, giving artists work and presentation spaces, as well as providing free art workshops in under-served communities. Currently, presenting over 150 events a year, with workspaces for 120 artists, they have developed 80 workshops in under-served communities.
To learn more about Frankie Lane go to www.FrankieLaneArtist.com/
To learn more about Chashama www.Chashama.org