black gesso on wrapping paper 48"x34"
I am acquainted with someone who owns a cardboard warehouse, or, I should say, “ a warehouse filled with cardboard.” It’s called Commerce Packaging and it’s located in a huge shed in an industrial section of South Norwalk. The building is filled from floor to ceiling with cardboard; all sizes, thicknesses, varieties. I am the proverbial kid in the candy store when I go there. I try to get someone with a pick-up truck to take me since the sheets are around 4’x7’ and won’t fit in the standard station wagon. Most recently, I discovered something called “triple ply;” an amazing material: cheap, sturdy, doesn’t collapse, yet is light enough for someone like me to manage. It’s not good for cutting-out figures since I would need a saw, not an Exact-o knife, but I have come up with a perfect use that I’d like to share with you.
|Canvases mounted on cardboard panels, 6'x4' each|
If I want to do cut-outs, there’s no material like cardboard. Foam core works but it doesn’t have that tan “middle ground” color that I like. Another good surface is brown wrapping paper; again, sturdy, inexpensive and subtly colored. It invites experimentation as failures can get crumpled up and without regrets, tossed into the garbage. About a year ago, I did a pretty successful series of charcoal drawings with white chalk highlights on wrapping paper. The problem is that when the paper creases, unlike canvas, it cannot be ironed out. Both cardboard and wrapping paper work especially well with children; inexpensive, disposable and much less inhibiting than a clean sheet of white paper. Do you really care if it’s “archivally stable”?
|"Thrift Shop Half-Price Sale"|
Installation: gesso on wrapping paper with metal hangars