The Forest and Time Travel and Postcards

Posted by joseph mccarthy on

I have always wanted to live a life supported by the meticulous curation of art and the chaotic sprawl of the imagery that discovers me. When I started the Neckahneck Forest Arts Collective it was an abstract idea. I had been making art my whole life. I had been running a print shop for half my life. 

I was in the woods one afternoon sitting in my hemlock grove looking down the rolling boulder pocked hills to the forest floor below.  A stream cuts through the property and with it comes all manner of life. Seeds travel along the top of the water until they are jettisoned like missiles into the soil along the bank where they grow into plants. Birds and bees carry pollen and seeds up into the trees scattered by a wandering deer or a thirsty black bear. Moss crawls across the rock face and up into the grove where the hemlocks blot out the sun and ferns and lady slippers find refuge in the shade below. The ground is soft below me as 100 years of deciduous debris cradle a gentle canvas for this place.

My forest is strong and wild. The things that grow here are not curated. My forest is chaos incarnate, yet they grow into a recognizable thing all the same. The Green Mountains take shape. Breathing in and out with the seasons, shedding and sprouting and growing taller, year after year. Through all this chaos it continues to look like a very classic “forest”. 

This will be my business model then, an art collective focused less on the moderation of content and more on raw creation; we will produce printed matter on subjects we are drawn to. We will take our artists and vintage collections and scatter them out into the world like seeds falling from 100 feet up.

This little green grove of mine sits just 90 miles from my studio. If you placed postcards end to end in a line it would take one million postcards to connect these two places so that's our goal then, a million postcards, a million little stories, a million forests.

I'm glad you found us. Welcome! Take a look around and if you see something you like, pick up a pen, buy a stamp and send a message across the world or down the street. This is how we propagate. These are our seeds. Floating down a quiet stream minutes and miles from here.

Postcard writing is not letter writing. When you compose a postcard you have a limited amount of space in which to express your message. Writing a postcard means being forced to write in short direct bursts. Get right to the point. The other half of postcard writing is the front of the card. What sort of imagery are you attaching to your message?  Postcards offer a chance to reach out and touch someone's life with something completely unique. A hand crafted message that exists outside of space and time.  

A postcard is not a necessity. It is an extra thing, an emphasis. A postcard is a moment frozen in time. An image chosen, and message written by you, the sender. These thoughts will make their way from desk to mailbox, wall to junk drawer. They will be lost, forgotten, found and appreciated anew. Eventually your postcard might find its way to a flea market on a space station 1000 years and a million miles from here and now. This is your seed, it is the chance to travel far beyond yourself, to reach out into the world in unexpected ways, to grow into a mighty forest.

Life is short and beautiful, fill it with art, and connections. Set your roots firmly in the ground because winter is always coming.

Welcome to the NeckahNeck Forest Arts Collective.