Once upon a time…there was a line! Paper as a support


Paper is the preferred medium for many draftsmen, essential for sketches, sketches and shaping ideas. But far from being a simple support, it also knows how to become a formidable source of creation. More and more contemporary artists are sculpting, handling, volumizing and carving it in order to experiment with its infinite possibilities

Paper is a thin, dry sheet made from various vegetable substances reduced to pulp. Appeared in China towards 105the manufacturing technique is transmitted to the Arabs. The latter make its use known by North Africa and in Spain. From there, the paper industry spread by France and in Italy. Artists began using it as an artistic medium from the 15th centuryArt on paper appeared with illumination in medieval times. Then, over the centuries, drawing on paper became a work in its own right, as shown by the painter’s pastels Elisabeth Vigée-Lebrun or by Pierre Bonnard. It became the receptacle for many media such as graphite, watercolour, gouache or ink.

But the support has become a material. A plasticity attested through the collages ofHenri Matisse or the pop-art works of Richard Hamilton. The initial scope of paper is expanding to become a unique mode of expression. The purity of the paper and its colour are enough to create mysterious and poetic works Giulia Manset uses Japanese paper that she gently scalps. A repetitive gesture from which an inner breath emerges from each recess Florence Le Maux works on the very essence of paper. Closely linked to the plant world, it becomes the second skin of a redwood tree, on which the variations of time and the passage from the imprint to the work are printed. Of Japanese and Korean origin, Tsuyu works a paper made of mulberry fibre to make its swarms of butterflies which, trapped in canvases or enchanted mobiles, confront the lightness of the soul with the trap of gravity. Inspired by optical art, the American Matthew Shlian builds three-dimensional geometric frescoes using conical, diamond, comma or rectangular shapes and the use of iridescent papers in several shades. The illusion is also played out in the works of the Chinese artist Li Hongbo These paper sculptures look like plaster busts. His portraits are made with thousands of stacked sheets that match each other like reality. His creations are made with paper sheets that contract and retract like accordions. This three-dimensional exploration of paper is visible in the surprising works of the Danish Peter Callesen whose cut-outs seem to be retained on the original leaf.

Visual poetry, displayed narratives, these artists sculpt, dissect an ancestral support so that the intrinsic work is born there.

Marlène Pegliasco

Graduate of a Master in Art History and living in Toulon, I created the blog Art In Var (www.artinvar.fr) to share with my readers, the rich artistic news of this beautiful department. This passion...

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