it’s an old stamp I took out of my Dad’s collection. Yoink.
Do you know what kind of animal that is?
How about what country that even is? Yeah, that got me on the Google straight away, right.
Turns out the Republik Maluku Selatan is a self-proclaimed republic formed in the South Moluccan islands in Indonesia in April 1950 in the aftermath of WWII and Japanese occupation.
The Indonesian government wasn’t a huge fan of the Republik and after years of conflict they formed a government in exile in the Netherlands in 1966 after the resistance leader was captured and executed, so Wikipedia tells me.
The Republik of Maluka Selatan continues to exist to this day, still in exile, still in the Netherlands, with a new head of state appointed in 2010.
They even have their own postage stamps. Or they did in the 50s anyway.
Really beautiful ones.
I guess that’s one of the things you do when you become a country, you get a postage stamp happening. Didn’t think about that too much before this, to be honest.
A postage stamp has an authority to it. It’s legit.
Even if it just carries the letter you wrote to your Grandma across the country, there’s all kinds of laws about how mail is to be treated. And if it doesn’t have a stamp on it, it doesn’t really fall under the category of mail. Or does it? All this thinking might start to hurt me.
Because I’m going to be thinking for weeks now about the Republik of Maluku Selatan and their excruciating and fascinating position of in-between-ness, of having some of the trappings of being a country: a head of state, a postage stamp, a name, a government, but then this piece of land they can’t govern.
Kind of like the Romani gypsies, and indigenous groups around the world.
So you see where I’m going with this. Basically the whole reason I make art is to create a whole parallel universe that may be done sometime in the next 50 years or something, from the smallest micro-organism to the tallest building to its own government and history.
And in all this process I realized I neglected to make my own postage stamp!
Duh! Thwack self on side of head with hand!
Animals are a good place to start I think. But the possibilities are just too delicious, I wanna hear what you’d do!
Please do tell, do write me back! Or if you wanna say things in public and get in fights with people, you can actually post a comment on the blog section of my website here. I’m trying that out this year, sticking my neck out of my turtle shell a bit.
Thanks so much for reading all the way to the end, and if you enjoyed this email why not share it with someone you think would like it too?
Hope you had the best New Years and also the most excellent first Thursday of 2017!