Boxes of Valentine’s Day cards have filled the shelves of stores, harking back to a time before texting and email, when your only means of communication was either a pigeon or snail mail. While it’s unlikely anyone’s going to send their greetings by pigeon these days, it is still possible that some of the cards might find their way through snail mail.
The Department of Visual Studies Student Society is once again hosting the Postcard Pen Pal Project. The event invites students and faculty from across programs to create and share art.
Jenn Park, president of DVSSS, said the project reflects the student society’s constitution and goal of uniting everyone through art.
“Art is one of those things that you don’t have to be in the program to appreciate. Bio, chem—you kind of need to be in the program to understand it, but art is a lot more unique and expressive,” said Park.
For the project, participants receive a cardstock postcard and envelope from DVSSS, and then they can draw, sketch, paint, or use digital media to create their own artwork. Then participants return their postcards to the centre, where the cards are randomly exchanged. After the pen pals receive one another’s postcards, they bring them to the afterparty, where the art goes on display and participants have a chance to meet their pen pals. If people are not able to make it to the afterparty, they can still leave their contact information.
Park hopes the project will bring people together and provide them with the opportunity to make a friend.
“We make friends in the weirdest places at university,” Park said with a laugh.
Last year, DVSSS held the afterparty in the Blackwood Gallery. They displayed the postcards on Adrian Blackwell’s sculpture, Furnishing Positions.
“It was a really cool experience,” Park said.
The Postcard Project is one of the DVSSS annual events that Park said gives people something to look forward to.
With DVSSS founded in 2011, Park said she doesn’t really know the initial idea that inspired the project.
“It’s an annual thing, and because our student society is so young, I feel like having annual projects like this is really pivotal in creating that foundation for us. That way people remember and [they] have something to look forward to,” said Park.