an ordinary letter

letter transcript (PDF)

a letter i found in my new flat, between a student and her grandmother. dated from over 13 years ago, this correspondence provides a small snapshot of someone’s family relationships. on one hand, the physical qualities of the object are interesting, such as the illegibility of the handwriting and the way the text on the back shows through the letter. but even more interesting than its formal qualities is the story of the characters within the letter, and the way your imagination is instantly sparked as you try to envision these people going about their daily lives.

some initial ideas of experimental work include dressing up as the characters and acting out the letter, possibly making it look like a kind of movie trailer where the characters and the premise of the story is introduced; writing back to the grandmother (i could even send the letter to every ‘garden cottage’ in the UK); rewriting the letter as a screenplay, continuing the story of the characters, and making a short film about it; and even staging the moment all these characters come together (as is foreshadowed in the letter). there is definitely a storytelling/performative aspect to this object and i think i could have a lot of fun playing dress up and seeing where the story and the characters take me.


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