Chiarina Loggia

A printmaker's progress


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Paper Dreams


Paper Dreams

Paper Dreams

I am thrilled to finally unveil my latest large piece, Paper Dreams, which was completed in 2015. Paper Dreams is probably the most complex and considered artwork I have created to date. Below is the artist statement I prepared for the work.

“Paper Dreams is a complex paper and wood sculpture created as a meditation on the impermanence and fragility of our dreams. Designed to loosely resemble paper strips going through a shredder, it consists of multiple photopolymer gravure prints with poetry, and reflects a significant period in my artistic life. By cutting and discarding portions of these prints, I surrendered the life I had created for them. In doing so I was able to create something new and beautiful, demonstrating how destruction and creation often go hand in hand, as do fragility and resilience.”

The idea for Paper Dreams began with a desire to create a complex paper construct made up of multiple hand-pulled prints, which would provide glimpses of figures in various moments and moods. This would be achieved through a combination of layering, folding and cutting of the prints. I had, over the years, created a large number of figurative works on paper, and in a decisive moment of clarity I realized what I truly wished to achieve. I wanted to create an artwork that represented who I was as an artist at this moment in time. Gathering all these images together in one piece would be one way to do that. At the same time, by tearing and discarding portions of these prints I was letting go of the life and dreams I had created for them individually. This was not an easy thing to do. I chose prints that I had deep connection to for their meaning and quality, as well as the treasured experience of creating them. They were an integral part of my life as an artist and a woman. Many of them were self portraits. By shredding them I was letting go of my own dreams. And in the letting go I found that I was able to create something new and beautiful with its own new life and meaning.

Below is a photo of the initial stages of layering and ordering the images. Some of the prints had to be cut and collaged onto new stips of paper to fit well. Here you see them before any collaging was done.

IMG_8005a

Paper Dreams in progress

Several new prints were created for the piece as well, and new and old poems were added throughout the work, all with dream motifs.  While choosing the images for the piece I realized that the word “dream” had been used in a good many of the individual artwork titles. Where I could, I left these visible. Below is a detail showing some of the poetry.

Paper Dreams, detail

Paper Dreams, detail

The photo above also shows how the layering affords mere glimpses at times of the images behind the front layers. I decided early on that this piece would be unframed and the poetry would be written in pencil, as this was an essential part of the theme of fragility. It was also necessary in order to lift layers to see those behind.

To anchor the pieces of paper I chose two strips of maple cut from one piece sliced in half and which had a  gorgeous live edge on the top. I found it rummaging through Detlef Grundmann’s woodworking shop and commissioned him to cut and sand it to size for me. I then finished it with GAC on the inside for a protective barrier where the paper would adhere to and with a finishing wax everywhere else. The pieces of paper were then glued on in four layers, two to the back piece and two to the front piece of wood. Finally the two pieces of wood were joined together as shown below. The back piece was wired like a regular frame for hanging

IMG_8357 a

Clamping the wood pieces together.

Below is a side view of the artwork showing its three dimensionality.

paper Dreams, side view

Paper dreams, side view

The title, Paper Dreams, works on several levels. It refers to the nature of the materials used in the artwork, wood and paper being the same material in different stages of creation. Primarily it denotes the fragile and transitory nature of life, attachments and desires and the deeply personal perspectives from which we view our world and ourselves.

Paper Dreams will have it’s unveiling at the 2016 Sooke Fine Art Show this July 22 – August 1 at the SEAPARK Complex in Sooke, BC. There will be a Purchaser’s Preview evening on Thursday, July 21, 7-10pm and an Artists’ Celebration on July 23, 7-10pm. If you are in the area please do visit the show and enjoy the many fabulous artworks on display.

To whet your appetite here is a final detail of the artwork.

Paper Dreams, detail

Paper Dreams, detail 2

Paper Dreams, photopolymer gravure on paper on wood, 34″x33″

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Tuesday Tales – The Art of The Selfie – Part Three


unbound a

Unbound

Unbound is a print fron an early selfie that I shot with a timer. I was just experimenting with the camera but when I saw this shot I knew I wanted to make a photo etching from it. It had an air of quiet strength and determination that I responded to immediately. I liked the saucy pose and sassy tilt of the body, the confident hands holding the string, and the anonymity of the person represented. This was every woman’s stand for freedom and self governance, with boldness and assurance.

This piece has resonated with others quite strongly and positively, and I’m happy to say it has been mostly women. The image above was the first print I made and it sold almost immediately. It also garnered a Juror’s Choice Award at the Sidney Fine Art Show in  2009. I have since sold two more prints, a mini version of it, and the multi-layered piece titled Fire And Rain seen below.

Fire And Rain

Fire And Rain

I have three versions remaining that are still available. They are shown below.

Unbound 5

Unbound 5

Unbound 6

Unbound 6

Unbound 6

Unbound 6

Unbound 6 has the poem “Playing hide and seek

In dreams and deeds defining” on the sides.

The final piece this image shows up in is below. It is called Coming Loose, and you can see that I have combined it with several images, including one featured in last week’s post.

Coming Loose

Coming Loose

Unbound 5, an 8″x8″ monoprint on 15″x20″ paper, is offered this week at $250 unframed
Unbound 6, an 8″x8″x1.5″ mixed-media monoprint on board, is offered this week at $120.
Coming Loose, a 14″x15″ mixed-media monoprint, is offered this week at $450 unframed, or $600 framed.

This ends the selfie series of posts (for the time being, as I undoubtedly will showcase more in the future).

No questions today though as always I welcome your thoughts and feedback.


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Winter Solstice – Lighting the Way


Sandcut Sunset

Sandcut Sunset

              For the earth turns
While the dark night sings to the dawn

                          Too long December

Today is the winter solstice. It marks the day when the earth tilt begins to bring it closer to the sun, starting the lengthening of our daylight hours once again. As we move out of the darkness our spirits lift with the brighter days. For many this is a solemn moment in the year to be celebrated. It is no coincidence that Christmas falls around the winter solstice, for Jesus is worshipped for bringing light and hope to a troubled world. While I am not a religious person I do embrace spirituality, for I feel it is our path to an enlightened life. And I do believe that the light is there within us, wanting to be brought forth.

A few years ago I wrote a post around the winter solstice. It was a difficult piece to write, and when I reread it, it still brings tears to my eyes. Whenever the winter solstice comes around I am reminded of it, of how it resonated with so many, but also of the charge I laid on myself then to live life fully and true to myself. I think I am about waist deep in the sea now.


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Serendipity


Yesterday I happened to read this beautiful poem just as the  song below began to play and somehow the two together meshed into something much more powerful and soul stirring. I’ve always loved the REM song but somehow hearing it sung operatically in Italian brought it to another level and because the words were not imediately recognizable I could read the poem instead while listening and this made the poem that much more poignant and beautiful. I encourage you to do the same and also to follow this lovely blog by a sensitive and beautiful soul.

And just for reference, here is the original REM song with its extraordinary video which also coincidently has added words that raise the poignancy of the song.


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Tuesday Tales – Boston Calling


Through The Darkness

Through The Darkness

It is with a heavy heart that I write this post today. The news of yesterday’s tragic bombings in Boston have left me terribly saddened. While any act of terorism and violence is abhorent to me, the fact that  it was directed at a running event brings it just a little closer to home. I have friends who have run the Boston marathon. I run in races myself all the time. These are events that have no political or social agenda. Rather, they are a celebration of human endeavor, spirit and community. It seems especially cruel to have targeted the finish line, the place where feelings of accomplishment and elation should have run high, and the place where families and friends gathered to cheer on the participants. Instead, a shadow of sorrow will forevermore haunt this place and those unfortunate families who were hit hardest with the blasts.

I have no words of comfort for them. There are no reasons that make any sense of such tragedies, other than in the twisted minds of those responsible. The world is as dangerous , and as beautiful, a place as it was two days ago. Only once again we are reminded to pay attention to our lives, our loved ones and our dreams. To be kind and giving and charitable. To try to make the world a better place in whatever way we can. Only then can there be any good out of such tragedy.

The monotype above, measuring 5″x5″, is a demo I did for a class. It is the kind of abstract I like to do that references light and passages, time and space. I thought it would make an appropriate offering for today. It is priced at $60 unframed for this week.

I have also found this video to be a wonderful balm for the spirit. May it bring you peace today and always.


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On The Blog of Innocence


Far Yet Forever Dear

It’s two days before my art show opens at Collective Works Gallery and I would normally be blogging a final post about the show about now, but tonight I want to bring your attention to another blog, an exceptionally thoughtful one by an exceptional man, Chris Al-Aswad. Chris was the creator of Escape Into Life, http://www.escapeintolife.com/  , an outstanding art site that brought an enormous wealth of beauty and inspiration to the online artistic community. It inspired me tremendously in my work and in my life. 

Chris passed away just recently at a tragically young age. His writings, a large library of them, are fortunately still here for us to peruse and savour. They can be found on his blog, The Blog of Innocence, here:   http://www.theblogofinnocence.com/ I encourage everyone to have a read and cherish the brilliant spirit behind the words.

My deepest condolences to his family and friends.


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No More Yellow Brick Road


Last night I saw Our Lady Peace in concert for the first time. It was a brilliant show that opened with a complete run through of one single album, Spiritual Machines, from start to finish, followed by a more typical rock show of best hits that ended with their spectacular Starseed. A surprise highlight for me was a rendition of Are You Sad from Spiritual Machines, played here brilliantly live: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0pSHxCiZRVo .

This song alone made the choice of Spiritual Machines worth it, although the concept behind the album was an intriguing one. Conceived as a response to the futuristic theories in Ray Kurzweil’s book, The Age of Spiritual Machines, the songs and lyrics are an affirmation of human spirituality, irreplaceable and worth fighting to retain.

Tonight I came across a shining example of that indomitable human spirit in the form of  Nick Vujicic, a man who you would think would benefit from such a melding of man and machine that Kurzweil predicts in our future, yet whose spirituality has found such a shining voice precisely because of the lack of such enhancements as seen here:

 http://lifeasahuman.com/2010/mind-spirit/inspirational/it-matters-how-you-finish/

This got me thinking about a song written by OLP’s lead singer, Raine Maida, for his solo project, The Hunters Lullaby, titled Yellow Brick Road, seen here:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AHdHSmAuk-k

and the print below, a monotype, which I titled No More Yellow Brick Road in response to his song.

No More Yellow Brick Road

The song takes a wistful look at the idealism, promise and simple beauty of youth and is a reminder to savour the moments of our lives. In my print, I reflect on the loss of this innocence and how with maturity comes the realization that our paths are not always clear, continuous or on solid ground.

The print, as with many of my abstract pieces, was begun with little preconceived ideas beyond a simple study in form and color. The wide yellow ‘paths’ were placed first, then the feint blue ones and finally the strong blacks were laid down. The piece was completed with some pastel work to add punches of color and a melding and defining of pathways. The ordering of these steps not only ended up having an uncanny similarity to our paths to maturity in life, but in the intuitive amalgamation of shapes and color to create a work of beauty I hope to express the joy in seeing the wonder and beauty of life as it is and not preconceived.

To paraphrase Raine Maida’s words to the audience last night, we are not machines and death gives meaning and beauty to life and so we must live it fully in the moment.