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Art

Daily Newspapers by Myriam Dion Unfold into Meticulously Woven Narratives

June 8, 2022

Grace Ebert

“Des collines arborées sont ravagées par le Dixie Fire en Californie, Le Monde, 28 août 2021” (2021), collage of newspaper and Japanese paper cut with precision knife (x-acto), paper weaving, paper folding, drawing, gold leaf, 41 x 26 inches. All images © Myriam Dion, shared with permission

Thin, interlaced strips of Japanese paper, gold leaf, and the occasional watercolor detail extend the life of a broadsheet when in the care of French-Canadian artist Myriam Dion (previously). Through slicing, weaving, and gluing, the daily publications find new meaning and relevance as the artist overlays their pages with intricate lace patterns. These precise motifs obscure much of the text, leaving only a prominent headline or single image entirely visible. Painstakingly constructed, Dion’s works question the notion that news is inherently fast-paced and fleeting and instead, offer visual depth, dimension, and intricacy that mirrors the nuance of the stories she highlights.

Using pages from Le Monde, The New York Times, and other organizations, Dion draws on both historical and current events in her most recent pieces. A winding, pleated form responds to the unyielding destruction of the Dixie Fire in California with cuts evocative of flames emerging from its folds. Another accordion-style piece commemorates the late Ruth Bader Ginsberg and her nomination to the U.S. Supreme Court in 1993, with black-and-white photos of the justice trimmed in gold.

“The revaluation of the handmade and the contemporary dimension of the craftsman are intrinsic to my approach,” the Montréal-based artist tells Colossal, likening her process to cultivating flowers or a vegetable patch. “There are many parallels to be drawn between gardens and my practice, especially in regards to contemplation, mediation, temporality, and the idea of beauty.”

Dion’s solo show Material Knowledge, which runs from June 30 to August 13 at Arsenal Contemporary in New York, will include a new work featuring a 1929 article announcing MoMA’s opening paired with references to women textile artists and crafters. She’s also preparing for an exhibition at Blouin-Division that will expand on the gardening metaphor and emerge from vintage botanical books. Until then, follow her latest projects, which will include a few upcoming public works, on Instagram.

 

Detail of “Amerian Museum, New cases of rare and curious birds, New-York Spectator, Wednesday October 22, 1810,” (2021) collage of newspaper and Japanese paper cut with precision knife (x-acto), paper weaving, drawing, watercolor, and gold leaf, 23 x 20 inches

“Mrs. Isabella Goodwin, The First Woman To Be Appointed To New York Detective Force, Wednesday August 23, 1911” (2021), newspaper glued on Japanese paper and cut with a precision knife (x-acto), paper weaving and gold leaf, 33 x 34 inches

“Amerian Museum, New cases of rare and curious birds, New-York Spectator, Wednesday October 22, 1810,” (2021) collage of newspaper and Japanese paper cut with precision knife (x-acto), paper weaving, drawing, watercolor and gold leaf, 23 x 20 inches

“Trees burning in Kirkwood, California, Thursday September 2, 2021,The New York Times” (2021), collage of newspaper and japanese paper cut with precision knife (x-acto), paper weaving, paper folding, drawing, gold leaf, 47 x 35 inches

“Mrs. Isabella Goodwin, The First Woman To Be Appointed To New York Detective Force, Wednesday August 23, 1911” (2021), newspaper glued on Japanese paper and cut with a precision knife (x-acto), paper weaving and gold leaf, 33 x 34 inches

Detail of “Ruth Bader Ginsburg, New York, Tuesday June 15, 1993” (2021), newspaper glued on Japanese paper and cut with a precision knife (x-acto), paper weaving and gold leaf, 17′ x 17 inches

“Ruth Bader Ginsburg, New York, Tuesday June 15, 1993” (2021), newspaper glued on Japanese paper and cut with a precision knife (x-acto), paper weaving and gold leaf, 17′ x 17 inches

Detail of “Des collines arborées sont ravagées par le Dixie Fire en Californie, Le Monde, 28 août 2021” (2021), collage of newspaper and Japanese paper cut with precision knife (x-acto), paper weaving, paper folding, drawing, gold leaf, 41 x 26 inches

“Des biches errent parmi les véhicules détruits par le Dixie Fire en Californie, Le Monde, 28 août 2021” (2021), collage of newspaper and Japanese paper cut with precision knife (x-acto), paper weaving, drawing, gold leaf, 32 x 30 inches

 

 



Art

Layers of Intricately Cut Paper Evoke Strength and Vulnerability in Christine Kim’s Elegant Collages

June 2, 2022

Kate Mothes

“By Heart” (2022). All images © Christine Kim, shared with permission

In intricately cut collages by Ontario-based artist Christine Kim, flowers, foliage, and crown-like adornments encompass anonymous portraits. Painted floral motifs on carefully torn pieces of paper paired with slats of wood appear like lath exposed beneath ornate wallpaper, providing a backdrop for the elegant silhouettes. The elaborate designs of the figures’ headdresses suggest wrought iron with delicate strands of plants or ribbon partially obscuring their faces. In her series Paper Thin, Kim explores myriad techniques for working with the ubiquitous material.

Inspired to examine relationships between surface, pattern, and volume, she portrays how the medium can be both fragile and solid, rigid yet flexible. She describes in a statement that the series evokes “dualities of strength and vulnerability, as stark black fences crown the regal female figures, but these barriers are, in the end, only paper-thin.”

Kim’s work is currently on view at Galerie Youn in Montréal as part of the group exhibition YOUNIVERSE until July 3. You can find more of her work on her website and on Instagram.

 

“Yesterday’s Thoughts” (2022).

“Stories We Tell” (2022)

“At Least” (2022)

“In Good Faith” (2022)

“Boundaries of Ours” (2022)

 

 



Art

Chimerical Creatures Combine Feathers and Fur in Isabel Reitemeyer’s Uncanny Collages

May 31, 2022

Kate Mothes

All images © Isabel Reitemeyer, shared with permission

Berlin-based artist Isabel Reitemeyer is known for making uncanny collages that splice images of animals and bodies into humorously enigmatic compositions. In her recent series, songbirds with guinea pig heads perch on twigs, horses with enormous bunny ears stand in fields, and a retriever looks out at us from the body of a chicken. The assemblages, which are often small in scale and made from found photographs and cutouts, are deftly aligned so that the outlines of the animals fit together seamlessly.

A bunny’s beady eye or the slight cock of a terrier’s head gives personality to each chimerical creature, as if self-aware of its unusual predicament. Reitemeyer taps into the ways we anthropomorphize our pets and other animals, reading into their expressions and feelings as if they were our own, resulting in sly and unusual personalities.

You can find more of Reitemeyer’s collages on her website and on Instagram.

 

 

 



Art

Paper Constructions Confine Skeletons to Uncanny Spaces in Jason Limon’s Paintings

May 26, 2022

Grace Ebert

“Cramped” (2022), acrylic on panel, 12 x 16 inches. All images © Jason Limon, shared with permission

San Antonio-based artist Jason Limon (previously) conjures paper sculptures of 18th Century-style gowns, organs, and hollowed skulls with acrylic paint. The uncanny structures trap his recurring skeletal characters in cramped boxes and funhouse-esque constructions, where they attempt to disentangle themselves from their surroundings. Rendered in muted pigments, or what the artist calls “repressed tones,” the paintings utilize the anonymity and ubiquity of the bony figures to invoke emotional narratives. Limon explains:

Paper allows us to know the stories of the past, and I’ve always been drawn to that notion… I use paper to build the shapes to tell my thoughts. In most instances, I will use box-like or folded paper shapes, but more recently I want to explore the insides of these containers to see what complexities I might find.

The pieces shown here are part of Limon’s ongoing Fragments series and are part of Stripped Down on view through June 5 at Haven Gallery in Long Island. Limon also has another solo show slated for November at San Antonio’s BLK WHT GRY, and until then, you can browse originals and prints in his shop and follow his works on Instagram.

 

“Look at Me” (2022), acrylic on panel, 12 x 16 inches

“Bisected” (2022), acrylic on panel, 12 x 16 inches

Left: “Feel” (2022), acrylic on panel, 12 x 16 inches. Right: “Perplexed” (2022), acrylic on panel, 12 x 16 inches

“Elegance” (2022), acrylic on panel, 12 x 16 inches

“Outlines” (2022), acrylic on panel, 12 x 16 inches

Left: “Inside Out” (2022), acrylic on panel, 12 x 16 inches. Right: “Unseen” (2022), acrylic on panel, 12 x 16 inches

“Stripped Down” (2022), acrylic on panel, 12 x 16 inches

 

 



Art

Wildflowers, Trees, and Quaint Cabins Spring From Su Blackwell’s Book Sculptures

May 19, 2022

Grace Ebert

“Nature in Britain” (2012). Photo by Jaron James. All images © Su Blackwell, shared with permission

The enchanting, imaginative narratives usually bound between the covers of a book burst from the page in the sculptures of Su Blackwell. Often sourcing materials from secondhand shops, flea markets, and library sales, the British artist, who’s based in Hastings, constructs lush gardens of birds and wildflowers and quiet cottages in the midst of evergreens that appear to emerge from vintage volumes.

Imbued with movement in the form of wind or waves, the whimisical works tend to revolve around the fleeting and finding refuge during times of loneliness and mundanity. Blackwell shares with Colossal:

I take my inspiration from fairytales and folklore and use these well-known tales as conduits for modern-day experiences. I often search for stories that relate to my life, whether that be Little Red Riding Hood meeting the big bad wolf or a princess given an impossible task of spinning straw (or in my case ‘words’) into gold, as in the Brother Grimm’s story “Rumplestiltskin. “The themes I explore have a universal appeal, and overall, there is a sense of hope pervading the works.

Blackwell is participating in a group show opening this August at Gustav Lübcke Museum in Hamm, Germany, and has solo exhibitions scheduled for 2023 and 2024 at The Last Tuesday Society and Long and Ryle in London. You can shop prints, cards, and her illustrated book of fairytales in her shop, and follow her practice on Instagram. (via Women’s Art)

 

“Migrating Words” (2014)

“Blue Butterflies” (2022)

“The Lighthouse Keeper’s Cottage” (2014). Photo by Yeshen

Left: “The Painted Lady” (2019). Photo by John Reynolds. Top right: “Weeds.” Bottom right: “Weeds (How to Control and Love Them” (2021)

“To Kill a Mockingbird” (2020)

“The Ship” (2020)

 

 



Craft Design

Fold an Elaborate Origami Menagerie with DIY Instructions from Jo Nakashima

May 18, 2022

Grace Ebert

All images © Jo Nakashima

Since 2010, Brazilian origami artist Jo Nakashima has amassed a trove of original designs ranging from modular cubes and kinetic works to multicolor, angular wildlife. His creations require just a single sheet of double-sided paper and a deft hand and vary in complexity: Nakashima marks the eagle with pleated wings, quacking duck, and writhing snake shown here as intermediate or above. Head to YouTube for detailed instructions on folding your own versions of his intricate designs, but take note of his warning: “Although I call it ‘simplified,’ it doesn’t mean it is simple: it is just simpler than the original version, but actually it is still a bit complex.”