A Million Little Pieces

Painted not with brushes but with excised, tiny pieces of paper collected from magazines. Especially magazines of good quality stock so they’d withstand cuts with an X-acto blade, picking up with tweezers and finish with medium.

I kept folders  assorted by colors:  reds, blues, textures, anything that looked interesting. My favorite  locale for harvesting tear sheets was the waiting rooms of dentists or Park Avenue doctors. Ritzy publications,  heavy stock, great color saturation. Cough, loudly, tear simultaneously and seize that perfect page.

Started with a rough sketch for composition and then went to work laying on pieces of paper.

Unfortunate addendum: not a method you can deploy under the rotor blades of a ceiling fan or your million tiny pieces will be confetti.

Some images from the St. Croix Ag Fair 2010- great local food, thousands of people, acres to wander, animals on display, and enterprise in all forms.

Best view in the house.

St. Croix is snake-less, except for this 7’9″  illegal escapee who was rescued and is now a teaching tool.

Kids and kids.

Clouds’ ancestor?

Meanwhile, back at the ranch………

These two……

Don’t you see a branding of calendars, napkins, mugs?

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34 Responses to “A Million Little Pieces”

  1. Carol King Says:

    Wow Bonnie, so that was YOU they were looking for when all those posters went up along Park and Madison looking for the magazine page thief!

    I LOVE your still life using paper. What great textures and colors. How did you adhere the paper? To what sort of surface. Did you put some matte medium on top of it when it was done? I need more info!

    Cloud and Angel are ADORABLE and they look like they’ve been caught in the act!

    • Bonnie Luria Says:

      Carol, the cut pieces were placed on a heavy stock paper with an acrylic matte medium which dries clear and acts as a glue. This process is so much fun to do. And you can keep layering paper until you get what you want.

  2. Melinda Says:

    Oh, my Bonnie! This is really wonderful. I had no idea you worked this way. It’s spectacular! I know just what you mean about any kind of air moving. Made me smile. And, then there’s the glue that can get everywhere, holding up the process.

    Love the photos too! Goodness, those animals are beyond cute. I think these guys need an agent. Really.

    Now, do you think you’ll approach an abstract in this medium?

    • Bonnie Luria Says:

      Thank you Melinda. Your comments spur me on. It’s good to mix up the medium when you feel cornered or boxed in. Otherwise, I’d sit and watch those two animals for days or longer.
      Although that’s not hard to do, art sometimes is.

  3. Nancy Moskovitz Says:

    It’s a fabulous piece melding color, texture, and memories. I guess we all have to try it at least once. Are you planning more or back to paint? Your pets must keep you grinning….so cute in their mischief together.

    • Bonnie Luria Says:

      Nancy, after seeing your horse, I’m guessing you’d love to try this. The only time consumer is amassing the paper in all its’ color ranges. But no brushes to wash or clean!
      Those two animals are out of central casting- Disney.

  4. Paz Says:

    Love your art work! Love the idea of how it came together. 😉

    So, did you win the goat?

    LOL! Love the last two photos. 😉

    Paz

    • Bonnie Luria Says:

      Paz- I didn’t buy a raffle ticket because I was afraid I’d actually WIN the goat and would have wanted to take it home!
      As you can see, I already have enough to take care of.

  5. Wreggie Says:

    Love your two idiots and the art.

  6. w1kkp Says:

    I needed some inspiration on this February morning and after looking at your still life, I just this second got it GAZAAAM did you hear it? Wow. Like Carol, I am so curious about the details but what I love the most is the organized chaos of these pieces, the randomness and theatre of their capture (cough hilarious I call it just imagining you make a big cough in a Park Ave doctor’s office) and the honest to god still life effect of all those blow away pieces.

    PS. The same “cough” technique was used by Phillipe Petit, the French high wire artist who walked between the Twin Towers. He first read an article about the Towers being built in a magazine in a yes you know the drill (no pun intended)….the dentist’s office. He coughed, tore, and ran out of the office. His obsession begun.

    I sorta feel the same way after looking at your still life. Thank you.

    • Bonnie Luria Says:

      Pat- I just rented ” Man on Wire ” and just about spit my cranberry juice through my nose when he declared his method of ” obtaining ” that article.
      We know we’re not so unique but when you see your actions duplicated in mirror image, it’s quite funny.
      If I could in any way, inspire one of your obsessions, my day is good already.
      Thank you too.

  7. Donald Diddams Says:

    Bonnie, you could go for a random abstract by doing one of these on the gallery! Cut up the right colors, then paste ’em where they land when the wind dies.
    I missed that sign where you could win a goat for just $1! What a deal! Take him home, keep him in the yard and sell the weed-whacker. We have friends who are very happy with their pet goats. I understand they love tan-tan. Of course, I suppose some people would just eat the prize and keep the weed-whacker.

    • Bonnie Luria Says:

      Don- we’ve talked about getting a goat but then I’d feel one solitary goat would be species deprived and lonely and would want another one. And then, I’d NEVER be able to go away! Who would take care of them?
      Would they eat every last flower and fruit that might bloom?
      Would I EVER paint for being too busy cuddling pygmy goats?
      I think you know the answer.
      That’s a very funny observation about eating the prize…

  8. Jala Pfaff Says:

    Oh my god, so now there’s Cloud, Rumi, AND a goat!!! Think of the new Photoshop possibilities!!

    Totally awesome work. You must have far more patience than I. Anything involving tweezers is out, as far as I’m concerned. On the other hand, perhaps Donald has the right idea–you could put a spot of Krazy Glue on each one, turn on the overhead fan, and voila: Art Forum will come running to praise it.

  9. lindahalcombfineart Says:

    I have never visited your site before but I will again. I love your collage. The colors and composition are wonderful. Last year I did two small collages called Shattered #1 and #2. They were my first truly successful commercial pieces and sold right away while hanging in group shows. You have inspired me to try collage again.

  10. Bonnie Luria Says:

    Hi LInda- thanks for leaving your mark here. I had a look around yours too and saw how diverse your artistry is.
    Why limit the medium when there are so many that call.
    I love how tactile collage is.
    See you again.

  11. Ted Davis Says:

    Let’s have a mag shreddding slumber party! That Cloud will steal the thunder from any pretender who dare call themselves ADORABLE! Wonderful Agfair photos!

  12. Bonnie Luria Says:

    Ted- let’s plan the shredding party followed by Carombola Beach Day© the morning after. You can take Cloud under the blanket with YOU and give Kelly a break from being ” smothered by that little dog…”
    It thrills me to think you like my photos, especially since I had a dream just last night that you started oil painting. And of course, they were great!

  13. Marian Fortunati Says:

    You never cease to delight and amaze me Bonnie…
    That still life is wonderful … It looks wonderful that the creative mind that came up with it is also a wonder. This work reminds me of an artist who only works in cut and torn paper and also creates terrific things… Gosh I’m going to have to search for her again.

    I can’t believe how Cloud is changing …. every absolutely darling, but obviously growing up a bit!!

    Now……. Did your kitty at any time get curious and end up with paper pieces stuck to its feet??? Kitties are so funny to watch when trying to shake paper or tape off their little feet.

    • Bonnie Luria Says:

      Hi Marian- thanks for your always and ever warm comments. Cloud is growing although not UP. She’s gaining length and not height. And still only tips the scales at 19 pounds.
      Isn’t it true about kitties that they only want to be where you don’t want them!
      It’s very funny to watch them try to get a piece of sticky tape off their paws.

  14. david lobenberg Says:

    Nice piece here, comrade. I like it! Thanks for the coughing tip!

  15. Sharon Crute Says:

    This piece reminds me of egg shell mosaics. Gorgeous subtle color and texture. I appreciate the work and…time (bet it took awhile)! A lovely creative and fun surprise.

    • Bonnie Luria Says:

      It does take time Sharon, but it’s oh so forgiving. It’s another way of seeing values, tone, color without having to mix paint.
      But as you know, one discipline is a cousin to another and it all relates to painting and ” seeing “.
      OK, thinking, too.
      Glad to know you check in here.

  16. planetross Says:

    So how many pieces of paper are in that picture/painting/art form?
    What! You didn’t count?
    I think you’re going to have to start over.

    It’s like a jigsaw puzzle, but without a jig saw … just an X-acto knife
    … and more complicated.

    Wow!

    That first photo with Cloud makes me think “Squirrel!”

  17. Bonnie Luria Says:

    Ross- if I had to count, I’d have stopped. It’s like repetitions at the gym- you just keep going and don’t think about it.
    Cloud has now been likened to ” Squirrel”, goat, pig, lamb and finally, some kind of dog.

  18. Joanne Says:

    Bonnie, As always, when I visit your blog, I feel uplifted and inspired! I do think you have created a masterpiece here with all the subtle shifts in blues, with some purple/pinks and bits of brown for shadows, with the textures, and of course the composition itself! I just really enjoy this piece – perhaps for the whimsy I feel when I view it, perhaps for the symbolism of a pause in the day to actually participate in having a lovely cup of coffee… or maybe its the sense of little pieces of brokenness coming together to make a new and beautiful whole. There is so much to be enjoyed and interpretively applied in this piece – I just love it! AND, as usual, I laugh out loud and drag my husband to the computer screen to show him the latest antics of Cloud and company… Thanks for sharing your life in this blog, Bonnie. I am one who benefits greatly from your creativity and wonderful sense of humor!!!♥

  19. Bonnie Luria Says:

    Joanne- and your thoughtful comment made my day. And made it richer than it was before I read it. It’s this, that keeps me interested in sharing it. That someone enjoys it, comes back, AND drags unsuspecting spouses who can often roll eyes at having to look at one more impossibly cute animal on a computer screen, gives me encouragement to keep at it.
    Thank you Joanne for keeping this so enjoyable.
    We all benefit from each others’ appreciation, as I do yours.

  20. Mary Sheehan Winn Says:

    I LOVE this! Very nicely done!
    Great pics from St Croix.

  21. Mary Sheehan Winn Says:

    I LOVE “a million little pieces”.
    Fabulous!
    Oh and the pets…….wonderful.
    Who won the goat ? 🙂

  22. Mary Sheehan Winn Says:

    I was here already 😀 but who knew. Not me.
    Funny when I revisit blogs I often scroll to the same posts and make a comment only to find out that I’ve made a comment. Well, that means I really LIKE IT!

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