UNTIL 22 AUGUST YOU CAN SEE SOME CHRISTMAS IN JULY/AUGUST from the collection of GJ.
Cabinets of Wonder exhibition, 12 July–22 Aug 2016 at RHSV, 239 A’Beckett St Melbourne. All welcome. Bring your friends. Entry is by gold coin donation. We reprint the exhibition guide for GJ (there are more than 40 entries. If you want a copy please send payment of $10 to the Ephemera Society of Australia Inc c/- 6 Duke St Richmond 3121 – for costs including postage and handling.)
Why does GJ collect? What does he collect?
Exhibit Number: 24 Exhibit: HO HO HO Collector: GJ Occupation: accountant ESA Member: 28 years *24 December is when Father Christmas drops off the presents.
GJ: I guess there was no specific trigger for this collection but I have always been very passionate about Christmas decorations for the tree and the home and acquired a few Santa figures which we displayed at Christmas time.
As a collector of other ‘”things” I gradually moved to retaining the Christmas cards that had a Santa image and the natural progression from there was to start picking up ephemeral items that had a nice image of Santa. Collections just grow from then on!
This display includes a range and variety of material, highlighting the diversity of ephemera. Collected for the image of Santa, historic and contemporary advertising material, beer labels, point of sale, postcards, envelopes, catalogues, paper bags, cook books and trade cards all meet GJ’s criteria for collecting. The material demonstrates how the test for inclusion in a collection can be stretched – only some of the ephemera has conventional friendly Santa faces and figures.
The Christmas card from the National Safety Council superimposes a beard and hat on its own logo. Perhaps this simplified image helps to define which elements are needed to communicate ‘Santa’?
The paper bag featuring many ‘Santa Claus’, including one wearing sunglasses, takes the collector in another direction – the Australian version/the 21st century version of Santa?
Unlike other collections, which are shaped by finite sets, this is an open collection with no boundaries except for GJ’s personal aesthetic.
Looks like Foy & Gibson’s archives are at the University of Melbourne archives see more at Foys catalogues.