UN-SEND Is an International Collaboration Project created by Ivana Blanco Gross on January 15, 2015. The project functions as a forum in which artists communicate with one another through an exchange of small works.
The collaborative process has minimal constrains, besides a set of pre-arranged rules which regulate the mechanics of the exchange. One artist begins the process and the second one finishes the work.
Un-Send origins were influenced by the colour exchange between John Berger and John Christie as published in “I send you this cadmium red”. Even though Un-Send uses the post (mail) as a mean to attain its products, the resulting works are not Mail Art per se, but an expression of collective conceptual work.
The nature of collective work brings forward the question of aesthetic boundaries as understood by geographical location and cultural parameters.
Meaning changes according to individual context; you can cut, paint, wipe out, obliterate, partially erase, burn, add light whatever you send or receive.
During this process, the meaning of the work is being altered and influenced by the changing world view and the social reality of each participating artist.
This layering of meaning is what ultimately defines the prima fascia dialogue between artists.
When the pieces are shown side by side, the individual aesthetic value of each small work reverts to second stage; it is the final set that gives the ultimate meaning to the groups collaboration. It is important to be able to apprehend the message of the joint artistic effort since the final product is not necessarily defined by conventional aesthetic parameters but by the cultural un-edited dialogue between the artists.
Since childhood, seeing is not a spontaneous process, it responds to convention and habit. The reaction each artist has to the envelope left in the mail box, pushed under the door or left on the front steps is in nature emotional-intellectual.
The response the receiving artist has to the close contact ( in-hand) with the work of others is unique and non repeatable and it is naturally swaddled in the artist set of personal experiences. The emotional-intellectual response triggers the work of art as a natural response.
In an age of Facebook, Whatsapp, Skype, Instagram, email and all sorts of instant communications the tactile first hand contact with the work of another artist creates a pocket or a wrinkle in time in which creativity happens and allows a quasi intimate communication between the parties.
UnSend is personal, it does not allow for mass communication.
In a way, this project takes communication a step forward – or backwards- and makes the small works travel and visit locations. Not just as part of the exchange as defined but by making the public a new and last layer in the communication process.
So, by traveling, the meaning of the works is constantly being re-layered and altered and re-contextualized according to the changing location.
At this point in time, when we are constantly bombarded with images and information and when we could say that all cultural borders are being erased by globalization and by almost twenty years of massive use of the internet, UnSend asks artists not to erase boundaries and differences, but to celebrate the exchange of different perspectives and distinctive world views.