How would a story recorded centuries ago by two German brothers inspire a young Australian women to immerse paper within a pot of boiling eucalyptus leaves? “The Handless Maiden” is a relatively obscure fairy tale collected by the Grimms’ Brothers which tells the story of a young girl who, when betrayed and maimed by her family, takes off into the forest to find her own way in the world. This traditional German fairytale has intrigued me since first reading it as a teenager, and it is this story which informs my current arts practice and research. As part of my Masters in Fine Arts, I am creating an installation piece created from plant dyed paper and natural materials found within my local Australian landscape. Through dyeing paper using this ancient textile technique I am crafting my own contemporary interpretation of “The Handless Maiden.”
My presentation will reflect on my own process of working, and will also explore the innovative practices of other visual artists inspired by fairytales. What is it about these age old stories that continues to mesmerise artists, and why are we driven to respond in such a material way?
|Keywords:||Textiles, Narrative, Storytelling, Art, Plant Dyeing, Fairy Stories, Fairy Tales, Kiki Smith|
Masters Student, College of Fine Arts, University of NSW, Sydney, NSW, Australia
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