Sometimes, work just catches my eye because it’s interesting and well executed. Then the more I look at it, the more I’m amazed by it. And then, I read the artist’s statement about his work and I’m left speechless at the way the creative mind weaves and works. Tennessee paper artist Charles Clary uses layer upon layer upon layer of hand cut paper to render intricate worlds that “mimic viral colonies and concentric sound waves“. ( !?! )
Recognizing the similarities in pattern between microbial outbreaks and sound waves, Clary’s work shows us, in a way, what could be lurking under any surface. We are lulled into a sense of ease and complacency by the smooth, unblemished surface of the canvas, yet what is revealed is a complex system of layered, interconnected shapes.
Despite their slightly menacing associations, for me, the work is reassurring rather than disturbing. I find it comforting to think that despite appearances, there is always more than meets the eye. What is taken for granted as simple, may very well be extremely complex. Like peeling back an onion, it’s only when we look beyond the surface that we see the layers.
To see more of Charles Clary’s work, please visit his website.
All images are via the artist’s website.