Blog Paper Earth Skins Bianca Severijns
The various skins of earth resemble an amazing organ: new layers are born, they breathe, age, are constantly re-created and lost.
During my visit to the desert, I was awestruck by the beauty of the marks, forms, patterns, formations and diversity of the earth’s layers. Each layer of earth embeds a story, a memory, or perhaps a scar caused by wind, water, drought, and time. I frenetically began photographing beautiful twig patterns and intriguing soil designs, knowing in the back of my head that these images might not be there tomorrow.
A wealth of inspiration sprouted from these beautiful earth layers and engulfed me. Back in my studio, I started making paper sketches abstracting the essence of the earth’s layers and skins. As my friends know, I have been transitioning my artworks from female (feminine) subject matters to abstract monochromes. The new sketches are experimental and embossed, and I have dared to step out of 2D layering by creating reliefs, depths and heights, while simultaneous discovering new elements within my beloved paper medium.
Driven by this new creative energy, my small visual poetics (paper sketches) became the starting point for new artworks. I am translating my recent fascination for natural textures, organic formations and soil layers into paper artworks, which will celebrate and nourish the beauty of earth.
Just to show you how inspiring beautiful earth skins can be, take a look at the following photos by Joshua Nowicki, a St. Joseph-based photographer. While exploring the shores of Lake Michigan, he stumbled onto the following sand tower formations that were formed when blasts of winds slowly eroded layers of frozen sand. In one word: breathtaking!