My paper sculptures include
installations of unaltered books, and
compressed and carved paper artworks.
Sizes range from small hand size up to 4 tonnes.
Since 1994 I have created unique techniques for building these unusual sculptures.
gallery of paper sculptures images here
(gallery for paper clay sculptures images here)
My published journal articles on paper sculpture here.
A commission from Queensland for 22 compressed paper sculptures trigger a frenzy of activity of the studio. Around 4 tonnes of discarded books (about to be be pulped) from the state Library system were collected. I removed their covers and Life Editions (a book binding firm) kindly cut them to the exact sizes required. Because each sculpture was 1.5 metres high, over 33 metres of paper was cut and I then drilled and threaded each. A gold edge on many of the books was preserved to add interest in the final works.
In 2007 I was selected, to create a sculpture for the 2008 Southbound Music Festival in Busselton. "Sum" was a 1.6 m high circle of over 500 Annual Reports, with two spheres made from over 5,000 survey maps on opposite sides and ends. As the paper weighted over half a ton, and tilted on a 45 degree angle, I spent substantial time designing the supporting and internal structure to withstand the possibility of some of the intoxicated 20,000 music fans climbing upon it!
In 2008 I was commissioned to build two metre high fungi infected paper finger sculptures for the understory forest sculpture walk in southwest Australia.
The Brain sell Project
Other 2008 projects include a braincell made from 5,000 donated books. With local help I built it in a new library, after which the books were sold off for charity. Images.
In 2009, the State Library of Western Australia commissioned a 2 metre high paper totem made of hundreds of children’s books.
Also in 2009 I construct a large (300kg) compressed sculpture for installation outside on the Cottesloe beach, for the annual Sculpture by the Sea exhibition which draws a crowd of 200,000 people over the two weeks.
For the 2014 Dublin Biennial, in Ireland, I researched 3D printers that print paper in layers, before constructing, shipping and exhibitions two, 2m high ceramic and compressed paper works.
As the Artist in Residence at Tranby College (2013-15), I created four outdoor sculptural seats from more than 20,000 pages of paper and 2000 bicycle spokes.
(More project may be added here, if and when I have spare time...)
More images are here.
Those interested in what motivates me to sculpt in dry paper, might read a speech I made many years ago (way before the disappearance of paper from our lives) about paper sculpture here.
Other reading for the more academic inclined:
"Dead zones of the imagination On violence, bureaucracy, and interpretive labour” the 2006 Malinowski Memorial Lecture, by David Graeber, from Goldsmiths, University of London.