There are those who believe that the age of books is behind us, and that dusty tomes are becoming little more than bookshelf decoration while just as much meaning and enjoyment can be derived from digital readers and eBooks. Photographer Luciana Frigerio might not consider herself a writer, but she certainly has a love of paper, and her recent work outside of the photographic field shows her versatility, creativity, and meticulous attention to detail in a way that few others have dreamed. While some might look at her page-folding messages as a cute novelty, the hours of planning and her exacting work ethic show her to be a talented and passionate artist who sees her craft as more than a hobby.
These striking book sculptures are made entirely from the pages within the respective texts, intricately folded to create depth and shading, and she has even ventured into exploring different fonts for her stark, literary messages, which requires a flexibility of style and displays an impressive ability as a draughtsman, though not in the traditional sense. Her choice of simple, universally accessible terms makes her work attractive and desired by thousands of admirers who, like her, haven't given up on the power of books, even if their love of books doesn't manifest in the way the authors might have intended.
There are millions of books lying forgotten in garage sale boxes, used bookstores, and unvisited libraries, so those literary holdouts who shudder at the thought of dog-earing a single corner of their favorite novel don't need to express their anger at the sacrilege of bending a few pages here and there. Frigerio takes one form of art and changes it into another, contributing to the fluidity of artistic evolution, while showing respect for her chosen medium through her choice of text, like "Read", "Write", "Imagine", and "Dream".
All You Need Is Love
Her obsession with paper and its many uses does not end with folding back the words of Shakespeare and Salinger, she has also begun to explore the expressive nature of color and perspective in her paper cut out scenes, which range from the whimsical to the macabre. She uses card stock and the play of light and shadow creates an illusion of depth in these intriguing works, and simple though they may be, her technical skills that may be overlooked in her book folding are once again on display in these simplistic masterpieces.
Her subject matter covers everything from dusk in Paris to murder in a subway tunnel, but the haunting and mysterious quality that pervades all the pieces is reminiscent of Tim Burton's animation style, dark and magical.
The scenes above have a certain surreal quality to them, which draws the viewer in, and once the lines of the different paper layers begin to blur, a complete scene emerges. They look almost like charcoal or pencil drawings, but are composed completely from intricately cut and measured layers of black, gray, charcoal, and light blue papers.
The scene from Paris may have a certain Belle Epoque mystique about it, but Luciana Frigerio also has a more sinister side, and her minimalistic scenes of casual murder are disturbing and beautiful at the same time. As a professional photographer, Frigerio understands the important of capturing specific moments to connote an emotional response, and that ability is quite apparent in this time-intensive side project that she has recently embarked upon.
You don't need expensive materials, a massive studio space, or a team working out of an atelier to create stunning works of art, and you also don't need to sell those pieces for exorbitant amounts. Luciana Frigerio has a very successful shop on Etsy where she sells her art and she is developing quite a following for her understated, yet entrancing, work.
If you want to see the whole range of Luciana's paper-based masterworks or to add some of those works to your own collection, visit her website!
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All images are subject to copyright by the artist.