Between the Folds

French Origami Artist, Eric Joisel. It’s amazing that each of these sculptures starts out as a single, flat sheet of paper.

Last night I watched the documentary, Between the Folds. It’s about origami, art, math, and engineers. I wasn’t sure if I would enjoy it, but I thought I’d give it a try since I did origami as a kid and I obviously like folding metal.

It turns out to be a really cool documentary. I enjoyed hearing how origami has influenced both the artists and the scientists/mathematicians. It was a good mix of technically brilliant pieces and those that had a soft aliveness to them. The patterns were so intricate and resulted in such amazingly three dimensional forms. I wanted to get into the studio right away and start folding metal. Of course it was after midnight when I finished watching it, so I decided to spare my neighbors the headache, hehe.

Material artist Chris K. Palmer experimenting in paper with pattern, movement and a flood light

It was interesting to see how the artists became more and more simpler and emotional in their work as their technique became more developed. For the sciencey guys there was a striving to building a perfect algorithm to create folds or to see what sort of practical applications origami could have. It ended up being such a wonderful blending of math and art.

Being who I am, I was happy to hear both sides talk about how important the process was. One artist, Chris Palmer, spoke about how

The second wedge fold. I couldn't balance the colors in this photo right, sorry.

I have got to get folding!

the public and the galleries see so little of what the piece really is. They see the end result, but so much of it is the process used to create the piece. As a craftsperson, that speaks to so much of what I do.

I still have to finish the pieces that I’m working on right now, but I’m inspired to start working through some ideas that the film sparked. The idea of creating forms using the minimal amount of folding is intriguing. We’ll see where this goes.

I got it through Netflix, but I found this link to Between the Folds on YouTube, though I’m not sure how long it will be available there, it’s unsanctioned. You can also find out more at the PBS site.

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Artist Interview: Mixed Media Artist Greg Jaskot

Heart and Hearth ©2014 Greg Jaskot On Exhibit at JAM Gallery-18″x 24″ Mixed Media (encaustics, oils, spray stencils, gel medium transfers, collaged materials, and found objects) on ply

Greg Jaskot is a mixed media artist who also exhibits at JAM Gallery in Malvern, PA. I met him at one of their exhibition receptions last year. His work uses graffiti stencil techniques and collage with found objects. I was drawn to the graphic quality in his work and you know I love the whole idea of doing something because others told you not to…

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How did you get started in your craft? (using your media)

I think it was a mixture of naturally growing up wanting to make things and a bunch of art teachers telling me I couldn’t do one thing or another. I remember having a scrap end of a 4×4 and a yellow tack hammer. Whenever my father would work on the house I would drag that piece of wood in the general vicinity and proceed to pound copious amounts of nails into it. I think I was trying to assist him and do my part in the building of a fence or repair of a door frame. I remember taking pride in these achievements as I envied my father as all young boys do in some way. Eventually I grew older and I learned the skills that my father possessed. I still take pride in being able to design my own stretchers and painting surfaces.

Bird Blue ©2014 Greg Jaskot (Sold)- 16″x 30″ Mixed media (oils, collaged materials, spray stencils) on ply

Eventually I ended up in art school ( even though my high school art teacher instructed me not to…) and I began learning new sets of skills. At first I learned each medium as a separate technique and kept them separate. As I grew as an artist I began to feel inhibited by sticking to just one media. I felt that if I could incorporate more techniques and media into my art making and be able to transition from one to another as I went, I would be able to create work that was diverse and capable of encompassing the message that I was grasping for. If I were to make an analogy for this I would say it’s like a musician with the ability to play more than one instrument. I guess I’m still evolving and adding things to my repertoire. I think this is something that keeps me in the studio and ideally it will never stop.

What has been inspiring/influencing your work lately?

Recently I was exhibiting work at JAM gallery and another artist, Bob Hakun, said that my work reminded him of Joseph Cornell. I considered this a tremendous compliment because I admire Bob’s work greatly. I was already aware of Cornell’s work but the thought stuck with me and I began doing more research into his history. I liked the idea of creating cabinet like spaces in the work and drawers. I’m currently working on the first boxed section to be attached to one of my paintings. It actually consumed a huge amount of time this weekend and I’m pleased with the results so far.

Sine ©2014 Greg Jaskot $280- 12"x 24" Mixed Media (encaustics, oils, spray stencils) on ply

Sine ©2014 Greg Jaskot $280- 12″x 24″ Mixed Media (encaustics, oils, spray stencils) on ply

Who are your favorite artists in your field?

In no particular order… Richard Diebenkorn, Robert Rauschenberg, Georges Braque, Juan Gris, Piet Mondrian, Squeak Carnwath, and Kathe Kollwitz. I don’t know if any of them are in my field but I always get something when I look at their work.

What is your favorite piece of art or fine craft that you own?

I have a wooden box that my aunt gave to me. It’s made from several pieces of wood laminated together ( ebony in between two pieces of blond burl wood I think.). It’s beautiful and I keep things of immense value in it. My aunt was very supportive of my artistic development and it reminds me of her.

You can find Greg’s work online at GregJaskot.com and in JAM Gallery’s Spring Eco Arts Exhibition in Malvern, PA through the end of April.

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Flame On! or the Crazy New Sculpture I’m Working On

Hey, I managed to get into the studio this weekend and look what’s taking shape:

The pieces are formed! ©2015 WTEK

The pieces are formed! ©2015 WTEK

I filed the edges, textured the brass, and formed it into shape. I also chopped off part of the nickel grid to make it fit better.

Then I drilled holes in one side and scalloped the inner edge. Next the other side got a taste of that.

Double scallops. This looks kind of like a helmet lying on its side like this... ©2015 WTEK

Double scallops. This looks kind of like a helmet lying on its side like this… ©2015 WTEK

Cool flame or something more eastern... ©2015 WTEK

©2015 WTEK

Side view. Pretty funky, huh? ©2015 WTEK

Side view. Pretty funky, huh? ©2015 WTEK

 

Here’s the original drawing:flame designThen I started working on a base idea. Of course, as soon as I cut into the metal for the base, I thought that something else might work better. We’ll just see how this goes first…

Kind of looks like a slug here. ©2015 WTEK

Base pattern: Kind of looks like a slug here. ©2015 WTEK

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