Melissa, and I'd like to share with you some background history about my husband
and his work. I met the artist in 1987, and happily together we shared our
marriage vows in 1995. Between the both of us, we have six children and seven
grandchildren. Kenneth Turmel was born October 19, 1956, directly on Route 66,
just a few blocks from its end in Santa Monica, California. He graduated from El
Camino Real High School in the San Fernando Valley in 1974. Upon graduation, he
enlisted into the United States Air Force later that same year. Throughout his
entire military tour of duty, Ken remained in the top ten percent of his
training classes in the radio communications career field.
his honorable discharge from the Air Force in 1979, he joined the ranks of the
United States Postal Service as a mail clerk and
retired from his position in
1994, after 20 years of dedicated Federal Government service. Ken was extremely
versatile during his postal career, for he had acquired the knowledge and skills
of 35 different jobs and positions. He received several awards and certificates
of recognition for his suggestions and ideas to postal management. Ken is also a
song writer, producer/engineer and part-time musician. From 1982 until 1987, he
owned and operated a multi-track recording studio. Two songs, which Ken wrote
and recorded in 1985, have received regional airplay in the central Oklahoma
the spring of 1993, the Oklahoma "Cherokee Strip Land Run" postage
stamp was introduced by the United States Postal Service. That sparked Ken to
put his music career on the back burner for a while, in order to concentrate on
a "new idea" that he had. Ken will always admit that this new idea
came to him in a dream from the Lord. He woke up one morning and promptly put
his dream to work and the result is what he calls "PostmarkArt."
"PostmarkArt" artworks consists of mint postage stamps placed on
colorful, hand-painted backgrounds of state border outlines. These very large
pieces of artworks are then hand-carried to hundreds of post offices throughout
the United States, specifically for the purpose of acquiring historically
significant postmarks to be placed directly atop the original artwork
background. Each postmark is inked in its own city and mile by mile the artwork
blossoms into a wonderful collage masterpiece. His methodical procedure of
personally delivering each artwork to each and every post office is never
compromised. The artworks are never mailed to accomplish this tedious task.
Besides that, creating a large PostmarkArt project is extremely time and cost
sensitive, and Ken would never let the original artworks get very far from his
"pictorial postmarks" which were placed on the artworks, commemorating
specific celebrations along Ken's postmarking routes, have all expired and have
been destroyed by the postal service according to regulations. This means that
the PostmarkArts become historical documents at the same time as they are being
created. These works have been acclaimed to be a "first of its kind"
by over 1000 postmasters and postal officials, including many confirmations from
various museums, collectors and professional artists.
Frequently dubbed as "the land runner", Ken has accumulated well over 150,000 miles of travel gathering postmarks and autographs within a 20 state region. He is currently working on some new and interesting PostmarkArt projects which include the topics of the Lincoln Highway, California Sesquicentennial, Arizona Centennial and New Mexico Centennial. Ken believes that someday soon, all the postmarks he has acquired will be "lost in time" and will be no longer available. His plans are to keep landrunning for postmarks for as long as he can. I anticipate that someday Ken will take his music career and recording studio off that back burner. He is always coming up with all sorts of new and creative ideas.
in the meantime, I guess we'll just have to wait and see what happens.
then, sit back and enjoy the historical PostmarkArt. Happy Trails for now!
- Melissa Turmel (Mrs. Landrunner)
Melissa and Kenneth
|© 1993-2012, Kenneth N. Turmel, PostmarkArt.com, website design by Legends of America|