i think many of you have seen postsecret, a site where people send anonymous postcards to an artist revealing deep secrets and he posts them online. i had a chance to interview the site "curator" frank warren recently for ambidextrous, the stanford design magazine. i'll post a link to the online content of the issue (the theme is "secrets") when it becomes available.
but my interview is available now in pdf format. here's a quote to entice you:
omar: Can some abstract secrets just not be doctored onto a postcard?
frank: I think that the postcard format creates limitations but also wonderful opportunities… A postcard is usually six inches by four inches. It’s a very finite amount of space to express your secret on. Because of that, you can’t waste any words. Each word has to really pull something out of your heart that exposes what you’re trying to share. I really think, in every case, each one of those postcards in its own way is incomplete. It’s imperfect. Because of that, it allows you, the viewer, to draw upon your own experiences, values, hopes, desires, and fears to interpret the secret you’re reading in a way that makes sense to you—to complete the story in a way that doesn’t just show you something more about somebody you haven’t met on the planet, but can also invite you, the viewer, to discover something new in yourself by projecting on somebody else’s postcard … (pdf)
i'm going to write more about the topic of form and content in another post. my ideas have been percolating. stay tuned!