One year ago today, Public Collectors lost a dear friend: Matt Hanner. Matt was a lot of people’s friend; he was just about the nicest person I’ve ever known.
Shortly after his completely unexpected death, I borrowed two boxes of Hanner’s ephemera and mailed art from Anthony Elms - a longtime friend of mine and a close friend of Matt’s. I made scans of many of these items and Anthony and I discussed putting them online. One year later I still haven’t uploaded the scans. On one hand, I feel badly about the delay in seriously contending with a lot of this material. On the other hand, I struggle with the idea of trying to somehow contain and neatly organize the highly quirky, personal, and varied approach of Matt Hanner’s art. And while I never pretended to understand what a lot of the things he made were about, I’m incredibly sad, still, that there won’t be any more of it.
Matt Hanner’s work took many forms. He made paintings, painted furniture, neon pieces, a truckload of burned CDrs, 35mm slide shows, field recordings, and hundreds of mailed postcards and bits of this and that. A burned CDr of a Boredoms album delivered on my birthday felt no less connected to his art practice than anything else he might create.
Over the next series of posts, I’ll be sharing some of the scans I made of things from the collection of Anthony Elms. Here is a modified postcard of Chicago. The back is stamped and addressed to Anthony but it’s undated because like quite a few of these postcards, Matt just wound up giving them to Anthony rather than mailing them.
Matt Hanner had a Tumblr blog: http://matthanner.tumblr.com/. He updated it until one month before his death and it gives an expanded sense of the way he was in the world.