For most of us, cardboard can be a rather mundane and uninspiring material. The new book ‘The Art of Cardboard’ published by Rockport Publisher, Lori Zimmer, flips that notion on its head and showcases a super-talented group of individuals who manage to find unthinkable potential in the everyday material and conjure up extraordinary creations.
Among the aforementioned super-talented roster, we’ve the likes of Andy Barret, Lacy Barry, Chris Gilmour Ann Weber and Wayne White, each handpicked by Lori for their inventive and inspirational use of cardboard.
Cardboard is an appealing material for these creatives for a number of reasons, with its low cost and high versatility ranking top for most. Cardboard-loving artist Evol has another reason, enjoying the inherent artistry of pre loved (see damaged) cardboard.
“I love damaged cardboard – because is conveys a “visual memory” – it’s fragile, and it tells by traces what happened to it (by water, force, tape, writings), a language that can be read by the viewer through its markings and damage” Evol.
As with any compendium of artwork by collected creatives, there are always some (subjective) stand out contributions. For me, a clear front runner has to be Lacy Barry, who’s colourful creations are simply stunning. Lacy’s combination of vibrant colour schemes, precise cutting and the graphic way in which she presents her final creations make for a truly unforgettable combination. Speaking on her affinity towards natural motifs, Lacy comments that she thinks it is “beautiful to watch something decompose and be given back to nature”, a fascinating point of view which has informed some stunning creations.
Another very different but equally impressive contribution comes from Daniel Agdag. Daniel’s intricate creations take inspiration from his fascination with the complex, internal mechanisms which lie behind the sleek facades of modern technology. His works have been described as “architectural imaginings” because they strike the perfect balance between conceivable machinery and dreamy inventions. Gazing at one of Daniel’s surreal, minuscule mechanisms, it is impossible not to be both intrigued and inspired.
My final standout pick from the book would have to be Muffinhead’s Alice-in-Wonderland-esque creations. Seeing cardboard applied in such a surreal, dramatic way creates a fresh, theatrical addition to the world of fashion.
The book ends with a collection of nine tutorials by different creatives, each teaching a different cardboard craft…perfect! As by this point you will undoubtedly be itching to get creative with this much maligned material.
You can order a copy of The Art of Cardboard here.