Thursday, March 25, 2010

New Work With Squares, Not Circles!


When I got back from Japan, my husband asked me what influence I thought the experience would have on my artmaking practice. I really didn't think it was going to have any kind of direct influence; what I took away from my time there was more about social and personal insights, and less about aesthetics.

But recently, when I was visiting Emiko Sawaragi Gilbert at her house in Plainfield, I saw a very compelling work on the wall that she told me was made by her daughter Hannah when she was in grade school. The piece was made with origami paper, and I was enchanted with the material.

Emiko gave me two packs of paper, and I was off. This was the first sign that my trip to Japan might influence my own artwork. Here are the first (and perhaps only) pieces using this origami paper. I call it FIVE EASY PIECES, as there are five pieces, and each work uses only five (whole, uncut) pieces of origami paper. Parts of the paper disappear beneath the mat.

I also got a gift of six glass-clip frames and mats a few months ago from Nick Santoro, that I used to mount these origami pieces. Thank you to all who have gifted me with art materials!

I find this minimal, geometric work very strange coming from my hand, but there it is! I love the delicate transparency of the paper that lets you see the layer beneath and the subtle changes it makes on overlying layers.

4 comments:

Jill Herrick-Lee said...

Good to see you back here Janet!

I love the use of origami paper (paper crane paper!)
Simple clean lines. Seems like a natural turn after traveling to Japan.
I'm curious... did you involve the mats to define the final compositions... like looking through a lens of a camera? Or did you define the size and then work within it? Also what are the dimensions of these works?
Also, I loved the Nagoya pics. The lighting made it's own life form around all of your life forms! The work must've been amazing to see in person.

strangedolls said...

Oh it is so interesting how an experience as big as your trip to Japan can manifest itself. Could it be that the circle is broken and you have now gone to squares? :)

I am loving the blog for the Nagoya project by the way. With the photos and video - I really felt I was a part of the experience virtually. The exhibition looked --amazing--!!

janetvanfleet said...

The origami paper is about 12 cm. (5"?) square, and all the extra bits of the paper (not seen in the aperture of the mat) are under the mat. I made the pieces knowing how the mat would crop them. I do truly think, however, that these are one-off pieces. I don't see myself going down the constructivist path in the long term!

The Nagoya show WAS amazing, and I feel so privileged and lucky to have had the opportunity.

nick said...

simple-di-do-da
simple-di-day
oh my, what
wonderfully simple
squares and colors
do make an origamied
picture