Hello little friend. It’s nice to see you again.
There’s a large wall space above my computer desk, and I spend a lot of time there. Periodically I switch out works from my storage shelves to the wall so I can see them and think about them. “We Remember It In Pieces” is visiting there now.
So, there just above my desk lamp is the little paper doll girl. I created this stencil in 2010 as I was beginning to experiment with monotype printing and using hand-cut stencils. One of the things I love about stencils is that they can provide a personal vocabulary – images to return to.
This simple shape speaks powerfully to me. First, the classic shape of the feet, where the slot between would hold a piece to make the paper doll stand, immediately transports me to a different time. This is how the paper dolls were made when I was a girl. I played with mine for hours. I created clothing for them and then created adventures for them.
She represents an innocent little soul. She is a rule-follower and an accepter. Who she is and what she does will be dictated by the outfits that are made for her — defining the roles she will assume.
When I first created works drawing on the concepts of journey and the interior life, the paper doll girl appeared in the works.
This is “Shallow Soil.” It was one of my first monotype collaged works completed and framed, and it is still a personal favorite. (Several years ago it hung the DeLand’s Museum of Art during a juried members’ show.) I like the juxtaposition of a growing girl next to a growing plant form. Both need nourishment to survive.
This is “Portals,” created about a year later. The landscape is more complex now, but the journey is still evident. I sense choices in this environment, and some scariness.
Since those early works, I have depicted girls and young women in larger textile works as more complex drawn figures: seated, contemplative, ambiguous.
Then, last fall as I was completing my series “Home is What You Remember”, I felt like I wanted a character to inhabit this neighborhood remembered. The paper doll stencil was pulled from her storage drawer and used to print her image again. In this work, she is a small part of a complex image, and not immediately obvious in the scene at all. (As is often true for little girls.)
I am enjoying spending some time with her while she is here on my wall.
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