When I learned German in college, the very first principle my teacher taught was: Übung macht den Meister, i.e., Practice makes the master.
As I later realized, this principle applies to almost everything else, especially cutting paper.
When I made “The Pebbles Think They’re Buddha,” I had to do what I try to avoid at all cause – re-cut. The problem is not the pebbles but the up side down shadow of the buddha. When a silhouette is seen up side down, it is more difficult for the eyes to recognize it right away unless it is very clear and distinct.
The buddha shadow on the left is too vague and the right is much better, although I did not like how thick the neck looked. Click to see larger image.
Buddha shadow tests
So the third time’s a charm, the final version (click to see larger image):
The Pebbles Think They're Buddha, rice paper cutout on silk, 12.25x12.25", 2010
Upper wings: Plane riders on burning snow mountains
Lower wings: Windmill blowing cars in the sky
What the Monarch Remembers II, rice paper cutout, 4.75x3.20", 2010
It marks the first time I exhibit in The Netherlands. The Holland Paper Biennial opens today and I have two works on loan to the Museum Rijswijk, i.e., “Office Riot” and “Drum Dash.” The Biennial features twenty-seven international artists is held at two locations: Museum Rijswijk and CODA Museum, Apeldoorn.
I had an open studio this past Saturday for a group of guests. I didn’t do a lot of it because of my exhibition schedules; it is sometimes difficult to keep enough inventory for myself. But this past one, the timing worked out for me to have some works back from recent exhibitions before sending them out again. I managed to have about thirty cutouts, a third of them new works, to display not only in the studio but throughout the apartment. Majority of them are small to medium size. Since it is not an exhibition, I focused on showing the creative process with tools and materials, drawings, computer renderings, work in progress, unframed cutouts, and framed works organized so guests had a good idea what it took and was involved.