Eric Ericson

Swedish artist, Eric Ericson has spent a lifetime mailing odd items through the postal service – with great success. He published a book in Sweden of his accomplishments called “Mr Cheng.” It is not for sale abroad, but the website and short interview below are quite entertaining.

Kerstin Sjoden of Wired.com got wind of his project and decided to interview him. Below is an excerpt from this Wired.com article.

Wired.com: What was the most difficult item to send?
Eric Ericson: Probably a mannequin that I sent in parts, it was kind of tricky. Sending a box of chocolate is much easier than sending a plastic skeleton. Food is easy; you just put it in a mailbox.

Wired.com: How did you get the idea?
Ericson: I’ve always been sending things by mail, just for fun. I sent things that I found, that came to my mind, all kinds of stuff. In the beginning, I had no intention of making a book, but then I felt that I wanted to do something out of it.

Wired.com: You have previously published books of letters, for example one where you sent letters with odd ideas to authorities, like asking a Swedish municipality if it could host a North American Indian tribe. Why are you so fascinated by letters?
Ericson: Sending things is a fun way to communicate, and I love the seriousness in letters. I mean, you would never receive a lawsuit by e-mail. There is something about letters, especially nowadays when they are getting more and more rare, and we’re communicating in other ways instead.

Wired.com: You seem almost obsessed with the postal system.
Ericson: Yes almost, or at least very interested. I’m very excited about logistics, about the fact that most of the stuff actually arrives. That it works. That you can pay 5.50 [Swedish] kronor [about 70 cents], put it in a mailbox, and the next day the letter arrives in Kiruna [the northernmost city in Sweden].

Just as with the postal system, I find it fascinating how the whole society works, that people go to work, pay their bills and go on vacation when they should. We’re like ants in a large anthill and we carry out our tasks, even when we don’t want to. We think we’re free, but we’re not. You can’t escape society.

This is a link to his Ericson’s website where you may view more images further documenting his love affair with an extraordinarily humorous, tolerant and/or meticulous Swedish postal system.