My work can be seen as a memory or an emotion. I frequently use handmade paper that I make my self, a process that has to form and develop. I also work with re-used paper such as the tatters of a book, which relates directly to the content of the artwork.
Paper making is labour-intensive, even more so if you make it from durable materials such as cotton and flax. Paper has its limitations and also its own language. You cannot make any shape you wish but you can try manipulating it until you discover new techniques which get you what you are looking for.
The challenge lies in the making of your own paper, so that you can explore the boundaries of the material.
The really attractive aspect of paper is that it is fragile, vulnerable and translucent, it has its unique physicality. For me paper has an association with both the evanescence and the finite. I try to catch its vulnerability in form, with pulp: conceptualising, binding, folding, sewing. It evolves from the ephemeral to the timeless.
In her profession as a graphic designer, paper has always held a special interest for Loes. Early in her career she experimented with ‘odd’ industrial papers on the press. The printers with whom she worked were pushed to the edge of their technical capabilities. From this Loes learned more about the material itself, which resulted in making her own paper. At first she only made sheets from various kinds of materials. Nowadays she uses only sustainable fibres like flax, hemp, cotton and kozo. Her artwork derives from her concepts and assignments as a designer/artist and also from her personal life. Loes makes 3 dimensional objects as well as 2 dimensional artwork.
Loes at work
In her paper studio Loes works at various art projects.The blue paper shown in the pictures was used for the installation Sea of Tears. The main material used for this project was flax. The fibres were cooked and pounded in a Hollander machine. Later the pigments were added. The sheets were formed on the vacuum table by pouring the paper pulp by hand inside the frames. 70% of the water was drained from the paper, then dried over the course of a few days. If necessary Loes uses a press to flatten the paper.