Heidi Whitman, Babel (1) (detail), 2020, ink, gouache, acrylic, paper, canvas, string, and cast shadows, 52” x 13 ½” x 1 ½”. Courtesy of the artist.
Paper is ubiquitous in everyday life, but is rarely considered beyond its flat functionality. This exhibition takes paper out of the two-dimensional into a world that is fantastical, intricate, colorful, and personal. Inspired by the materiality of paper and the metamorphic quality of the papermaking process, Paper Town explores paper in pulp, cast, folded, and cut forms.
The exhibition includes artwork by the following New England artists: May Babcock, Erik and Martin Demaine, Andrea Dezsö, Tory Fair, Hong Hong, Fred Liang, Michelle Samour, Wendy Wahl, and Heidi Whitman. In their work with paper, these artists explore personal histories and cultural traditions, create navigational devices for mental maps and imagined cityscapes, and study complex mathematic principles. Nature, science, and art meet to showcase paperwork’s transformative potential.
Paper Town pays tribute to Fitchburg’s history of paper manufacturing. It is the third in a series of FAM exhibitions that link contemporary practice to the industrial heritage of North Central Massachusetts.Paper Town is sponsored by Can-Am Machinery Inc. of Fitchburg, Massachusetts, and the Simonds Lecture Fund.
May Babcock and Megan Singleton, Ebb and Flow I, 2016, handmade paper pulp from Mississippi River mud, abaca, cotton, American Lotus, 25’ x 12’. Courtesy of the artists.
Andrea Deszo, (left) Ancestor’s Garden, 2013–2015, (right) The Island of Rauma Lace, 2013-2015, hand-cut Japanese hand-made Shojoshi paper, 8″ x 11″ x 7″ each
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