Do people still write letters? I miss them dearly. Emails don’t really count, I mean sometimes they almost do, but rarely and never entirely. A letter is a handmade thing, touched by one person and sent to another through the magical system of the post. Countless aesthetic choices exist—lined paper or patterned stationery, pencil or green felt tip pen, American flag or Harvey Milk stamp—and that’s not to mention the possibility of collage, drawings, and the inclusion of small flat objects. In this time of isolation, of the world slowing down so much it can seem as if it has stopped, Rachel Epp Buller has made a daily practice of this outmoded form. Today she’ll have mailed off letter number 105 of the “Pandemic Epistles,” marking 105 days of quarantine and 105 acts of communicative care. Each is penned on a piece of paper Buller has marbled, moody folios that under present conditions recall viruses more than paisleys or waves. She sends them to someone, somewhere, in a gesture that feels just right for right now: safe, steady, social and blessedly screen-free. With gratitude to the mail carriers, whose motto may need to be amended beyond snow, rain, heat and gloom of night to include threat of contagion.
—Lori Waxman 2020-06-28 11:02 PM