Tuesday, December 9, 2008
Does your Christmas tree already adorn your home? If you like unusual ornaments I have them for you: goose eggs decorated with scissor paper cutouts! I make them following a beautiful tradition from my native country Poland. This is only one of many ways of decorating eggs in Poland but for an artist working with paper, like me, (paper cutouts/collage) it is an obvious choice.
When you hold one of these in your hand think how much work is involved in creating each ornament. First you have to find a nice farmer who will save them for you. Then you drive to the farm, buy and bring them home. Next they must be washed (they are stained with dirt, grass, mud, and I won’t tell what else). After drilling two holes, a thin stick is inserted to puncture membranes and mix the whites and yolk.
Everything is then blown out with a plastic straw (you can save it for baking, my dog loves it scrambled). To do it you have to have the lungs of a hippo.
Having suffered of severe asthma for years, one day, in desperation, I tried to employ my old nebulizer (a pump for asthma medication) to that effect.
EUREKA! Please, don’t be envious - enjoy your healthy lungs!
After blowing out the insides it is necessary to wash the eggs again. After drying they must be sterilized in high temperature in the oven (the shells cannot crack or get discolored). In the meantime I cut hundreds of tiny decorations, free hand, using scissors and art paper (acid free and colorfast).Then I glue them over the eggs’ surface. This is the step everybody simply dreads.
Finally I insert ribbons, so the eggs can be used as hanging ornaments. I don’t like to coat them with sealers because they lose (in my opinion) that great, natural look.
The egg, with its perfect shape, makes such a beautiful symbol: the promise and the gift of new life, new beginning, the most precious gift we have. I like to put on them tiny tree of life designs and often roosters –symbols of good luck, prosperity, strength, and fertility.
What a wonderful ornament for Christmas, Easter, for somebody blessed with a child or just recovered from illness.
Speaking of people who raise or care for animals, especially those who love them, I created, some time ago two images: “Blessing for the Forest” and “Blessing for the Farm”.
The original cutouts are sold, but I used them to print an edition of silk-screens on archival, marble paper (each one printed individually, by hand and signed).The whole image has a sepia/burgundy tone.
“Blessing for the Forest” is sold out – I have only one left, framed under glass (sorry for the reflections in the included photo). “Blessing for the Farm” is still available (framed or unframed). In both images, in the tree, you see Kokopelli (the Native American entity, believed to bring good crops and fertility among other powers).
I am closing this post showing another paper cutout from the group called generally “Stars”. This one’s title is “House Blessing”.
It was a pleasure to see many of you during my shows. Thank you very much for buying my art. My last show this year will be in Tucson, Arizona (details –my previous post).
If you have any questions, email me, please.
Wishing you all the best,