3.1.09

Do you have a secret?

As I mentioned before, my lovely sister bought me a really interesting book for Christmas called Postsecret by Frank Warren. Warren initially set up the idea as an ongoing community art project which in many ways it still is but it has also become so much more. It is based on the simple idea that most people have a secret so Warren handed out blank postcards in many different ways; the postcards invited the recipients to decorate the postcard with a secret that they had never told anyone and then they could post it back anonymously. Warren created the website in 2005 and since then he has received over 2,500 pieces of original art from across America and around the rest of the world.
The secrets range from criminal admissions; secret desires; guilty pleasures; lost love, regrets and dreams. I sat and read the book in the space of a couple of hours and I know that it is something that I will go back to again and again. Some are hilarious and some brought me to tears but the profound feeling that I took from the book was one of hope in that you hope that the person who sent in their secret will now find life a little easier now that their secret is out there. On the website many people have emailed in to say how liberating they found the experience of putting their postcard in the postbox and walking away.


Warren's project which encompasses the website; many books and now travelling exhibitions really makes you stop and think. It is true that we all have secrets; I know that I do and it makes you think about the burden that we place upon ourselves by carrying them around with us. They can be events from childhood; behaviour that we are embarrassed about; dreams that we keep to ourselves and regrets that we do not wish to share. I think that Postsecret is a fantastic project, it's brilliance comes from it's simplicity. Obviously Frank Warren deserves the recognition for the time he has devoted to this project but the real stars are the people who were brave enough to write their secret down and send it out into the world, knowing that they would never be able to get it back.


3 comments:

StuckInABook said...

How wonderful. I see this website mentioned every now and then, go and love it, and promptly forget about it. Thanks for another reminder!

Cupcakes and Peonies said...

Glad that you enjoyed the book chick! xx

Dot said...

StuckInABook- I've only recently discovered it but it is lovely to have a look at every now and again, definitely gives you something to think about! Happy New Year!

Cupcakes and Peonies- It is one of my favourite Christmas presents- Thank you!! xx

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