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Guido Vermeulen's mail art envelopes are like worlds into themselves and at the same time they are part of the much larger whole.

(a comment by NANCY BELL SCOTT, USA, on the IUOMA network)

Guido's paintings are like finding images in the clouds
(a comment by Kathleen D. Johnson, USA, on IUOMA)

Guido does not paint monsters but spirits and ghosts, full of love, tenderness and compassion
(LIZA LEYLA during a conversation, Belgium)

His ability to express emotions through painting is a beautiful gift. Allowing oneself to feel sadness is the most direct route through grief. His paintings feel peaceful and kind.


My life is shifting... Your work is intangible, ethereal, cosmically rewarding. i eat it up & savor it like a great sandwich! It made my day!

Thank you for the TALISMAN painting on the envelope. It is real cool and creepy at the same time. I haven’t seen a piece of abstract capture such as pain and emotion so well since I visited the museum of art in Toledo. Bravo!
(Sarah Jo Pender, USA, from the Indiana Women’s Prison)

I suppose you could characterize Guido's painting style as expressionist. I know he is very interested in dreams as a source for art and poetry, and these particular chapter pages seem like shadowy dream corridors filled with shifting images and scenes. The Michaux quotes work as a counterpoint, Guido's art is taking over when the limits of language have been reached.
(De Villo Sloan, USA, on my tribute pages to Henri Michaux, see LAMUSAR blog)

Guido’s art expressions are always poems and they show us the reality of our real faces and souls (Mariana Serban, Romania)

His titles have both inspired and educated me (Alicia Starr, USA)

maandag 4 oktober 2010


Intervention on a small standard mail art envelope, mailed to PC Tictac in Germany for the project "messages in bottles", accompanied by a letter and a text "20 impossible things to bottle?", written around the envelope

Sehnsucht Neckerei Klittern Erfüllung

Brussels, 2 October 2010

Dear Patrizia,

Nice to hear from you again. Thank you for envelope, letter and jazz contribution.
I checked your blog and was amazed, seems like you are right: "Messages in bottles" is the type of project that needs to grow in the minds and hearts of many mail artists. Some of the results are stunning, so this could become a project of reference, not that this is the aim of mail art altogether but okay, we have our own preferences. I like "growing" or difficult projects to tackle.
One of my favorite projects was on "shadows", proposed by a woman who called herself Shadow. We met many times. She died in 2005 and I'm still in mourning. Impossible to bottle that pain, I'm afraid.
I made a tribute blog to her with "a little help of my friends" (in the mail art network). See: http://shadowtributes.blogspot.com

Interesting letter, I like letters by the way! It's one of my regrets. The lack of letter communication in mail art! Some of this is linked with language problems but some is also linked with the problem of using language as a tool of communication. We live in a period of visual communication and it's easier and faster to create an open visual image. Words often create confusion and misunderstandings. People often ask this rather silly question on a poem: "okay, it's beautiful but what does it mean???!!!". That same question is not asked about a visual image or a video clip. We accept the silly bombardment, so to speak.

Zappa? His song "the torture never stops" is one of my favorites but I must also admit I have little knowledge of his music as a whole. Many of the Belgian jazz musicians I know have paid a tribute to Zappa and even said they were influenced by his music. So for me he's not cornered into the narrow frame of pop or rock music. I've always been open to all types of music but most of the times I'm bored to death by the music in the charts. I liked (and still like) the music of people like The Velvet Underground, Lou Reed, John Cale, Leonard Cohen, Neil Young, Joni Mitchell, Tom Waits. I loved the rage of punk music or the later outbursts of The Libertines.
At the same time I was listening to blues and jazz, to folk and protest music (labeled now as "world music"). My first album I bought at age 14 was "Joan Baez nr 5" and that same year I went to the opera in Brussels to expose myself live to the music of Mozart, Strauss, Verdi and Wagner. I was not "a typical kid". The big discussion on the playground of the school was between whom liked the Beatles and whom liked the Rolling Stones! I defended Jimmy Hendrix and Richard Wagner in the same length of breath (funny to think about such things at age 56).

I love your idea of documenting your project in a bottle offered to a nearby lake. It's spiritual and poetic at the same time. Reminds me of the artist Lotte Glob. She was Scandinavian but lived in an artist village in the Highlands of Scotland. We (=Marilyn Dammann and me) met her accidentally during a trip thru Scotland in 1996. She made ceramics and put them as sculptures on mountain roads or mountaintops. Also she made floating bowls for the Scottish lakes. They are round objects with a small hole in the bottom, so quite light and filled with air. She made them in many colors and put hundreds of them on the lakes. They were moving and dancing on the water. I nearly cried by the sight of that ballet and Marilynn and I bought one of the items. It's on top of my library. Sometimes when I have the blues I full a basin of water and let it float. It calms my soul and weakens my heart, not that it is in need of softness in general, but yes, sometimes it does! We live in a harsh world. How to avoid cynicism has become a way of life! (laughter)

Postal hug,


20 impossible things to bottle?
Dedicated to Patrizia Tictac



3. Klittern

4. Erfüllung

5. The longing of golden fish bones

6. The sleeping beauty of funny feathers

7. The maiden moon in the silver lake

8. The sunspots in the darkness of your eyes

9. The backbone of our common love dispute, accompanied by lute music

10. The winter garden of the vanishing snail in my bath room

11. The peace prayer of a singing nun smoking marihuana (she was murdered by the church)

12. God suddenly spotted as a U.F.O.

13. The melting snow inside your warm arm pits

14. The slow waiting for sweet forgiveness

15. The next corner around the universe of pain

16. The simple truth perceived as simple truth

17. The blues piano going home at last

18. The loneliness of the mute knight excluded from the table round

19. The crying ghosts in a night deprived of oxygen

20. The last breath of a dying stray cat I fed for many months

Guido Vermeulen, October 2, 2010

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