Admittedly, book art is pretty rampant nowadays, from intricate carvings to convoluted folding. I've been drawn to the pictures one sees online as much as the next person, but Bronia's explanation of why she creates with old books is what especially captured my attention.
She says book art is "like an abstract form of writing, using images, colours, and shapes in the way a writer uses words, or a musician uses notes, chords, and volume to do a similar thing."
This statement carries even more meaning when you realize the interminable struggle Bronia has with the written word. She is dyslexic - letters and words appear scattered - and I suspect Bronia originally turned to art as a way of more freely expressing her thoughts.
She says that because a book is flat and has order, she feels challenged to create a 3D sculpture from its pages. With cutting and folding "...a book becomes organic and random."
Bronia mentions that the heads of the rolled and folded paper birds she creates resemble delicate skull bones, thus showing fragility.
Despite her struggle with reading and writing, Bronia says she likes words, the thought of well-known books, and on a very small scale, individual words from stories that everyone knows. Thus, viewers can still identify with the book or story once it is no longer readable. "I almost feel that by cutting it up you're getting inside the story manually - exploring the pages and delving into the magic of the words."
Bronia's jar art springs from her love, and study of, photography. The jars serve as 3D photographs, similar to the memories she has of a pond she built in her parents' garden as a child. Bronia would sit at its edge, imagining all that was below the surface as a silent, new world.
Bronia Sawyer - Website
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