A few years ago, my dear friend Nancy H. decided it was finally time to clean out her storage unit, save what was important, and recycle or dispose of the rest. Fortunately for me, she brought bags and bags of 80's clothing and memories to my kitchen to cull through, savor and discuss. The catalyst for the project was the loss of 75 pounds and a new wardrobe. While we laughed at the big shoulder pads, rhinestones and peg leg jeans, we also saved all of the cotton, denim and linen for papermaking and indigo dyeing, plus the silk and leather for book binding.
The Old Brown Cow and Other Moosings (spine and back detail)
The jeans made wonderful paper. A brightly colored silk blouse was deconstructed and pasted onto kozo for the inside cover of a book of poems written by Nancy M.; and the short leather jacket with the big shoulder pads and zip-off sleeves became the spine hinge for "The Old Brown Cow and Other Moosings." The book was bound with a long-stitch technique and trimmed with a small band of indigo dyed cotton inserted between the leather and the recycled cattle chow covers. Thanks, Nancy.
Having been an illustrator, art educator, and an avid gardener for many years, I have always been drawn to aerial views of land, maps, rivers, soil, and organic systems. Experimenting with handmade plant fiber paper is a culmination of that attraction to texture and natural materials. By combining my papers with ephemera collected along the way, my work layers history, meaning, and place into objects that are no longer lost or mis-placed, but reconstructed and transformed.