Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Box Sculptures

Handcrafted cards, boxes, folders, frames, bags – these are the things that I’ve had in my mind to do. They are all vessels, containers for holding thoughts, keepsakes, images, and gifts. I had just finished a collection of collage cards and was ready to take on boxes.

I didn’t want to limit my approach with an eye towards just craft, something I think of as more functional and beautiful, but to widen my approach to seeing them as objects of art, something to investigate for its own sake regardless of aesthetics and practicalities. My friend Kathryn, who I meet once a month for an art exchange, called them box sculptures when I started to describe my idea. I think that word, “box sculpture” allowed me the freedom to converge my notions of craft and art, or in fact let go.

This is the first one and like most first sketches it isn’t at all close to what I had in mind. I started with a template of a standard small box and covered it with squares and strips of found and decorative papers. I’m not at ease working in 3D. The glue I used is not strong enough, the box is fragile and it doesn't close. I thought of lining the whole inside with the same paper but it was too intense, so I changed mid-course and now the result looks odd. It’s not very “sculptural.” I doubt there’s any sort of convergence of art and craft in this, but I did try to let go of preconceptions. 

It is kind of eclectic-looking. I didn’t hold back on how I arranged the paper collage. I enjoyed the process. It took me forever to make (starting with cutting the squares and strips of paper). But in the end I like it. It’s the beginning of a new direction. Now I can start on another one and am excited to see what happens.

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