Sunday, May 24, 2009

Tape Art, Cellophane Tape Anniversary

Cellophane Tape was patented on May 27, 1930. It's a great day to celebrate artists who use some form of tape in their work.

The first person who came to my mind is Mitra Fabian who uses Scotch tape, glue and window blinds to create fascinating sprawling floor works and topographies of enormous scale. Her pieces may look simultaneously pretty and fragile, bizarre and ominous, as they appear to be growing out of control.

Artist Mark Jenkins is a master of the world of street art, including his unconventional Scotch Tape forms. A visit to his web site to check out his work, if not to see his work in person is well worth the time.
(One of Jenkins' tape pieces is shown below.)

Danny O signed on as the official spokesman for the 3M company’s 75th anniversary celebration of Scotch brand tape in 2005. He is known for a unique ink-on-tape art form and spectacular collage-style images. Some of his most famous work was created using vintage 'Archie' comic books. “The ink is easily lifted from the coarse paper pages and the hues are vivid," he said.

Kristina Lewis utilizes common household objects such as duct tape, drinking straws, zippers, needles and magnifying glasses. Her work is attractive and provocative. She has a July show at the Oakland Museum Sculpture Court in California.

Mark Khaisman "paints" grand scaled pieces with several layers of translucent packing tape,
applied to clear Plexiglas and placed in front of a light box to give the image shadow and depth. The idea came partly from the artist's work in stained glass. Khaisman will have a solo show at the Philadelphia Airport titled Tape Noir, Sept 14-Oct 10, 2009. Information should be confirmed closer to the date.

Khaisman's 2009 site had a short Q&A where he talked about the use of tape in his work:

How you came to working with tape?
My Tape Art is a conversation with light. I started it like a traditional stained glass artist, but with tape: I found I could continue my conversation with light, but in a more expedient manner. I might have never thought of this “medium” if not for my working in stained glass.

Yet, tape's happened to be much more than just a replacement of the stained glass medium. It miraculously bonded together all my previous experiences.

If you would send me a parcel – how would that look like?

My parcel would look like any other parcel, but it will take me quite a few attempts to get it right.

The Tape Art web site has features about tape artists and their work in different settings including hospitals.

Perhaps the most poignant and moving is The Hope Project: The Eleventh of September: an act of remembrance.

From the main site: "Between 2001 and 2006 we drew every fireman and airline passenger that passed away at the World Trade Center on September 11, 2001. These drawings were made in 496 locations spanning from the WTC to 123st in Harlem." The drawings were temporary and done in tape.

The web site is an awesome memorial with photographs of the artwork and a list of all the 2,749 names of the deceased organized in alphabetical order. The site features a detailed map with dots showing of locations of drawings of each person who lost his or her life at the World Trade Center in September of 2001.

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