ProWax Journal 7: Featured Artworks

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ProWax Journal

The Pull of Paper

by Deborah Winiarski

Artists have been pulled to work with paper since the time of its invention centuries ago. In addition to using paper to sketch or capture a moment quickly, they have been pulled to paper as their primary vehicle of creative expression. Working with paper is tactile, intimate, immediate. To work with paper is to be close – one can only be as far away as the length of an arm with scissor, brush, pencil in hand.

Art that combines paper and the medium of encaustic is a fairly new concept that began with Jasper Johns in the 1950s. Johns collaged papers into his paintings using pigmented wax both as paint and adhesive. But it was not until the middle 1970s when Dorothy Furlong-Gardner pulled the first encaustic monotype off a heated plate that paper became viable as a primary support for encaustic work.

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Linda Bigness is an internationally exhibited artist who maintains a gallery/studio in Syracuse, New York. Her work has been exhibited in several prestigious solo and group shows that have involved notable jurors such as art critic Clement Greenberg, Ivan Karp, director of OK Harris Gallery in NYC, and Tom Piche, director of the Daum Museum of Contemporary Art. In addition, Bigness’ large scale paintings are often selected and commissioned for corporate and residential clients, including the Turning Stone Resort, Merrill Lynch Corporation, Haylor, Freyer and Coon, and Bausch and Lomb. She continues to exhibit professionally at several venues with artwork featured frequently at the Nan Miller Gallery in Rochester, NY. Presently she is working on her latest book and exhibition about abstract art and the contemporary processes used by working artists today. Part of the research for this book is taken from the workshops she teaches and her oil painting and mixed media collage experience. For over 30 years Bigness has used her expertise to share with others the unique beauty and processes of her chosen medium through writing, teaching and professional exhibits. Her first book “Paint It, Tear It, Create It” offered the reader insight into visual abstract thinking through the process of collage into painting. She continues to explore the abstract through surface manipulation using encaustics and oil and is currently working on a new series, the “Journey Stones Revisited,” a reflection upon her extensive travels throughout the United States and Europe.

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