Lauren Collin Paper Artist - Paris, France

Is your work always created out of one layer of paper?

Yes, it’s always one piece of watercolor paper and I carve into the thickness of the sheet.

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Watercolour Arches paper – detail.

You have always had an interest in small.  Explain how you spent many hours of your childhood behind the microscope and how this has affected your current work.

I am very passionate about nature and I can pass hours and hours observing her, sensing all the details and memorize them. There are so many wonderful and beautiful small things around us and it does inspire me every day and has since my childhood.
At different scales you can observe several pattern in nature and this is the starting point of my artistic statement.

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Watercolour Canson paper, 50 x 60 cm

Expand on how using different qualities of paper can change the work you do?

Each paper has is own characteristics that make it unique, as is its colour, texture, density… Even of the two same papers have differences because they are homemade and this inspires my work and the way I will sculpt the paper. The rendering won’t be the same if I use a very granular paper with a crumpled appearance or another very soft and smooth. Light and shadows will look very different on them.

Can you briefly explain the technique you use in your paper sculpture?

I use several scalpels to carve watercolor paper. My cutting work proceeds by notches and gives rise to the thickness of the sheet, scales that capture light on surface. Then, the paper becomes sculpture. Light revealing its forms.


Why do you work mainly in white?

Because I never get tired of white and all its subtleties and variants. White calms me down and inspires me a lot.

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Watercolour Arches paper, 25 x 15 cm

How has Japanese origramiques influenced your work?

Japanese origamis are very interesting and a lot of people think about it when they saw my “Bas-relief” but it doesn’t really influenced my work. I am not very good at origami by the way! I like forms and how they can capture lights even if they aren’t in paper.

Can you explain where you work – your studio?

I live and I work in my apartment because I have the opportunity to have an extra room that I can use to do my paper works and also introduce it to people that are interested in it. I like to meet them in this kind of intimacy because it’s a way for me to present my universe, my personality just as every day with my family.

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Verge paper, 600 gr, grey, watercolour, 47.5 x 36.5 cm

Do you need excellent daylight?

Yes; it’s one of the most important things for me to create paper sculpture.
My “Atelier” is a south-facing place and it’s the best way to enjoy the daylight.

How does light effect your completed work?

Light allows the paper to reveal its volume, its movement and colours. Without the right light my work isn’t highlighted. If you put to much light it can crush the volume that’s why it’s important to have some shadows.

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Watercolour Arches paper, 850 gr – Blue

Discuss your work and how it is exhibited? Size. Framing.

At the beginning I discuss with the gallery curators to know what kind of work I can do, and the size. After that I  speak about the way to exposed them.
My work is most of the time exposed in an American box with a wooden frame and an anti-reflection coatings glass to enable people to look at them correctly.

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You do some of your work in series.  Several pieces within one frame, discuss.

I like to work on piece of paper that has the same size and the same type of paper and presenting them like a series because it shows that every piece is unique but they are a part of everything.

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Are you restricted by the size of paper available?

Most of paper is made by traditional techniques that why you can’t find each type of paper in the size you want but there are many possibilities to find big pieces of paper in some mills in France or in other countries even if in Paris at Sennelier quai Voltaire shop.

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Contact details.

 Lauren Collin

Lauren Collin, Paris, France

Interview by Deborah Blakeley, July, 2016