Wednesday, September 2, 2015

TAG Interviews Lorraine Bubar

Lorraine Bubar, No Stopping, Papercut, 37 x 24", 2015
What does the title "Not Home" mean to you:
My current show is called "Not Home." One thing I really appreciate about being in TAG Gallery is that I can show new work every year and the deadline for an upcoming show motivates me. I start working and after a few pieces, an idea begins to formulate in my mind about a theme I would like to concentrate on. I love to think of every possible way to examine that theme. In this instance, I was ruminating over the concept of "home" and what that means to me, but I was thinking about it in terms of security, comfort, family, and the quality of life living in a city. I was taking it for granted that the physical home exists for me and then thinking about all of the emotions that fill that physical space. But so many news stories bombarded me during this time period that began to influence what I wanted to express. Many of my past pieces, including the flora and fauna of different natural environments, do address the issue of conservation, but I do not often get very political in my work. Included in this recent body of work, I wanted to express my sadness, despair, and frustration over the fact that so many people and species around the world are experiencing loss of home, whether it is due to an earthquake in Nepal or attributing climate change, pesticides, or deforesting for the loss of homes for animals and insects. Driving around Los Angeles, it is impossible not to notice the increase in tent cities. The news is filled with stories of the migration of people who walk miles and spend their life savings to escape to what they hope will be a better life, only to find more insecurity and grief. The security of home is nothing to take for granted.
Lorraine Bubar, Heart in Nepal, Papercut, 33.5 x 23.5"
Tell a little about your process:
All of the color in my work is from the papers that I find. Most of them come from countries that I have loved traveling in, including Thailand, Nepal, and Japan. I complete a drawing and lay my drawing on top of the first colored paper and, using an x-acto knife, I cut through the drawing and that paper, cutting away all of the negative space. Everything left, which is essentially my drawing, is connected to the outside border so that it creates a very intricate piece of lacework. I then lay that on top of the next color and cut away more. I continue layering colors from the back until I am satisfied with the combinations of colors, the contrast of colors, and how the subject matter is drawn out from the background values. I end up using about 8-10 different layers of paper which create the depth and texture in each piece.
Lorraine Bubar, Bubbles, Papercut, 40 x 22"

Most Frequently asked question: How long do these take you to do? I love the process so I do not keep track of the time. Many of these pieces are symmetrical. That means that I create 1/2 of the composition and lay it on a folded piece of colored paper. I cut through both sides and when I am done, I open it up. This aspect really drives me to work very hard. When I finish that step I can open it up to reveal the overall composition. There are aspects of the way that I work that I drives me so that I lose myself in the process and do not keep track of the time.
Lorraine Bubar, Not Home, Papercut, 30 x 39"
Why did you start to do papercuts?
For many years I used watercolors. I would cut stencils to airbrush in the backgrounds, blending colors very evenly, and then paint everything else with brushes. So I was already using an x-acto knife very carefully to cut the stencils and not cut through the watercolor paper. Then I decided to cut through the paper. I had a realization one day that numerous cultures around the world create papercuts, including Mexico, China, and Eastern Europe. With my unique papercutting style, I am continuing the tradition of papercutting with a more painterly approach. I love being part of this artistic heritage that crosses the boundaries of culture, art, and craft.
Lorraine Bubar, Going Up, Papercut, 38 x 26"
Lorraine Bubar, Butterflies, Papercut

Lorraine's work can be viewed at TAG until September 26.
Meet Lorraine at her Artist's Reception on Saturday, September 12, 5-8pm

Do you have a question for Lorraine?
Add it to the comments below and we'll have her answer it at the Artists' Panel discussion on Saturday, September 19, 3pm

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