Alaina M. Plowdrey
Hideki Kihata, Chair
Alaina M. Plowdrey
University Art Gallery
Mary Gaynier is from Toledo, Ohio, and has a Bachelor of Fine Arts from the University of Toledo. Her intricate paper cuts have received much acclaim and awards, including first place in the National Juried Competition, Works of Art on Paper at the Long Beach Island Foundation of Arts and Sciences in Loveladies, New Jersey, and first place in the Mid-Atlantic Juried Art Exhibition at the Hoyt Institute of Fine Arts in New Castle, Pennsylvania.
The work in this exhibition will provide viewers with an opportunity to experience a fresh, and contemporary expression of the very traditional and culturally diverse art of cut paper. Her work contains a humorous and entertaining narrative element. She creates narratives that are open ended, inviting the viewer to come to their own conclusions about the developing story. Her work is intricately detailed and viewers have the opportunity to discover hidden surprises in each piece.
Artist Statement: I discovered my love for the art of Scherenschnitte, or paper cutting, completely by accident in 2001 when I began making simple cut paper snowflakes at the winter holidays. A pleasant diversion became an obsession, and my simple designs evolved into a more complex mix of abstract patterns and identifiable images of everyday life. As a draughtsman and printmaker with a penchant for detail, I developed more refined cutting skills while maintaining the basic circular or "snowflake" form.
One of the aspects I enjoy most is watching people examine my work, first from a distance where they see a more abstract rhythmic pattern, and then up close, where to their surprise, they might find a scene of a bustling city or an alien from outer space landing on planet earth.
The surprise element in my work is not only for the viewer but for me as well. I do not know exactly what each cut paper design will look like until I unfold it after al the cuts have been made. The repetition of the design creates a rhythm that takes on a life of its own, independent of the identifiable images within the design. The unexpected element of my work always keeps it fresh and exciting for me. I am always anticipating my next design. Mary Gaynier
For gallery open hours or more information visit our webpage at www.svsu.edu/artgallery or call the Department of Art at SVSU (989) 964-4159