The Portland Stamp Company The Portland Stamp Company

Stamp No. 54Christine Miller

Christine is a conceptual artist based in Portland, Oregon. Her art centers around racial stereotypes and histories while simultaneously reframing cultural narratives. These stamps are being released in conjunction with her solo exhibition “all de watermillion fr’um heabun” at Sator Projects. The show runs May 18 – July 27, 2024. 🦷 🍉

 

Have you designed a stamp before?

I have never designed a stamp before ! Never knew this was a thing outside of the USPS.

 

What was the most interesting or fun aspect of designing a poster stamp? What unique challenges did it present?

Creating this stamp sheet was much more challenging than I anticipated. It required a blend of creativity and surprisingly, a lot of math and left-brain activity. It felt like assembling a puzzle! When I work on puzzles, I often convince myself that a piece is missing at least five times before finally discovering it and joyfully completing the puzzle. This same feeling emerged while making the stamp sheet——finding the right image to fit perfectly in its place felt initially impossible, but eventually, everything came together harmoniously.

 

Tell us about the art. Did you create something new for this stamp?

The artwork for these stamps is aligned with my solo exhibition “all de watermillion fr’um heabun” at Sator Projects in Portland, Oregon, opening May 18 and running through July 27, 2024. The show explores the impacts of Jim Crow, COINTELPRO, and imperialist white supremacist capitalist patriarchy on African Americans. It’s always a challenge to visually convey weighty historical narratives using the watermelon motif. The second stamp sheet draws inspiration from the 1976 USPS bicentennial stamp design, originally in red, white, and blue, but reinterpreted in red, black, and green to symbolize the prioritization of limitless Black creative expression and liberation from the constraints of the white gaze.

 

Anything else?

Both of my parents retired from the post office (Mom: 37 years Dad: 42 Years) so stamps were always part of my life and felt personal to create. My mom collects stamps and recently gave me a sheet of her Malcolm X stamps !

 

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The Artist Series


An ongoing collaboration with invited designers, artists, and writers who create original work for an unusual form: the poster stamp. The stamps are printed on lickable, gummed paper and pinhole perforated by hand on our vintage machines. The sheets are signed and numbered by the artist, and released in editions of 100. Suitable for framing. View full series.

Upcoming releases include Bwana Spoons, Ka’ila Farrell Smith, and Art Chantry