i. I am a: Collage artist
ii. Something I’ve learned about myself as an artist over the last two years:
That my creative process is most fluid when I don’t feel the pressure for my work to “be” a certain way. Because I work intuitively and my art is a reflection of my inner landscape, trying to create anything other than what surfaces naturally impedes the process and compromises the emotional honesty of my work.
iii. The name of my current exhibit/show is: Collage Works by Ginger Sedlarova and Seema Shah.
iv. In describing the show in 3 sentences or less, I’d say:
This show features works by two artists who use very different styles of collage to tell very different kinds stories – one conjures up surreal scenes reflecting the absurdities of the world around her, while the other pieces together emotional narratives reflecting a dark inner landscape.
v. In the show, you’ll see:
Work that may challenge your ideas about collage. Through the stark contrast of two artists’ styles, you’ll also get an idea of just how diverse the medium can be. My work in the show is quite spare and dark (in tone and colour), and steeped in metaphor. Text features prominently in the form of short fragments of cut-up poetry. In contrast, Ginger’s collages are bright, surreal, and visually striking narratives filled with detailed imagery. She creates incredible “multi-layered landscapes of both fiction and history.”
vi. The inspiration for this show comes from:
The inspiration to create an exhibition showcasing collage comes from Yuri Arajs, the show’s curator. I appreciate his vision, as collage is a medium that doesn’t often get centre stage. As for my work, my inspiration comes from a place within that needs to be expressed creatively. This includes two pieces based on dreams – ‘Mostly Below Ground’ and ‘A Tale of Two Cities’. Ginger’s work, on the other hand, is a reflection on society. I so admire the way she uses her art as a form of social commentary.
The Sounds Of Winter
vii. One challenge in developing this show was:
Finding a visually cohesive selection of work. Though much of my work is similar in terms of themes and tone, I don’t create ‘series’ with pieces that are meant to work together. Each new piece is created in the moment, independent of what came before.
viii. My past work includes:
Prior to collage, my focus was writing, both creative nonfiction, in the form of personal narrative, and poetry. Now the main writing I do is that which is incorporated into my collages.
ix. Putting a new show out into the world right now feels:
Exciting. This is my second two-person show (the first was in January of this year at Outsiders and Others, when I was paired with Valerie Arntzen). If you asked me a few years ago, I would never have dreamed that I’d be sharing my work with the world in this way or be showing alongside such talented collage artists.
Mostly Below Ground
x. After this show, I’m looking forward to:
A stretch of time to generate some new work. My two most recent pieces, which are in this show, were created on old book covers. This was a first for me and I enjoyed it so much that I went out and bought some more vintage books. I can’t wait to start working with them!
xi. Anything to add:
Thank you so much for the opportunity to share some background about my creative work and process. For anyone who might be interested, we’ll be having a live virtual artist talk on Sunday, September 12 at 2 p.m. PST. Zoom link available at https://thecultch.com/gallery
Now You Don’t
Header Image: A Tale Of Two Cities