Ruth WOLF-REHFELDT b. 1932

Ruth WOLF-REHFELDT was a key figure in the Mail Art movement, in which women were rather rare. She would send her creations to her international contacts in the Mail Art networks and invited them to intervene with the works and return them: “Mail Art was a kind of safety valve, and, too, a certain satisfaction." she has stated. "I was never able to travel, but I was glad that I had contact throughout the world that all the others who were allowed to travel sometimes didn’t have.”

 

Among the others, she established a correspondance with Paulo BRUSCKY, with whom she exchanged works incessantly in the 1970s and 1980s, creating a connection between dictatorship-era Brazil and East Germany.

 

Mail Art was also an antidote to the cultural isolation of the Cold War, as correspondence was less easy to control than exhibitions, though it was routinely monitored by the government.

 

Born in Wurzen (East Germany) in 1932Ruth trained as a typist, a stereotypically female role, which lead to her creation of ‘typewritings.’ She moved to Berlin in 1950 where she met her husband, the experimental artist Robert Rehfeldt, one of the most important postal artists in the German Democratic Republic, who would include Ruth's works in his correspondance to his fellow male artists.