Cars, Castles, and Credibility

I’m cutting all day today on Cadillac, the latest in our Structured Chaos series. The shapes and rhythm of this piece are not consciously determined by me but instead are following a reworked reference picture which in turn has been based on one of Ben‘s photographs. It’s quite a complicated chain of events but the results are already proving to be completely different to anything I’ve ever cut before.

This first layer is already proving to be an artwork in itself. In fact, I deliberately put the same level of detail into virtually every layer I’ve ever cut and many of the artworks can be dissected into this level of technical detail. For the Structured Chaos series there are already more than 100 layers of cut paper across six different pieces. This level of detail is often hidden deep within the artwork to the point where you can barely spot it but nevertheless it’s important for Ben and I to know that they’re there. We want viewers to look in closer and closer to the point where even with a magnifying glass they can look deep into the image there spot no flaws. Equally, from a distance, Ben’s photographs should stand out as something worthy of consideration in a gallery space. The attention to detail, the craftmanship, is what makes this series worth pursuing and gives us both a sense of accomplishment.

Meanwhile Cadillac is proving to be the strange and delicious fairy tale with cars, castles, and crowns appearing on an oddly formed landscape. Nothing is drawn on the paper, every cut is hand-made, but even I don’t have a clue what will happen. My unconscious tells my eyes to follow the chaos of the reference picture and I’m just hoping that my hands will create a credible and coherent structure.

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‘Cadillac’ (edit) work in progress by Melanie Ezra and Ben Honebone

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