Charlotte Hodes
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‘Silhouettes and Filigree’ Marlborough Fine Art 2009

Drawing is the way in which I begin. I make pencil drawings and take photos from observation which enable me to construct images in my mind. I do not invent. The drawings become modulated and changed through subsequent drawings, tracings, digital manipulation or as hand cut paper stencils according to how I intend to use them.

Both the ceramics and papercuts come into existence through the process of collage. In developing the images for the ceramics, a multitude of enamel silkscreen and digital transfers of colour sheets, figure motifs, domestic elements, computer icons and patterns are hand cut with a fine scalpel blade which are applied directly and intuitively to the ceramic surface and then fired. I use a similar process but on a larger scale for the papercuts. Colour and pattern as well as drawn figures are composed and printed on a large format digital printer which are then collaged with other fragments of painted and coloured papers in the studio. The ‘cut’ and ‘paste’ of the collage is inherently playful and full of surprises. There are collisions of imagery, of scale, of edges and of shapes. The many fragments invite a myriad of possibilities.

The female figures are depicted as silhouettes either walking along or sitting. They are contained shapes which are held in place and sometimes interrupted by the filigree patterns which spread across the surface. They coexist with elements which have over decades been represented and re – presented in the fine and decorative arts; drapery; cloth; ornament and pattern. They acknowledge their origins but exist, I hope, in the present as new incarnations. They are a celebration of the art histories from which they have come, whilst existing in a painterly space with my rules.

I have endeavoured, through the tactility of making, to evoke a pleasure of dense surface, colour and filigree pattern in which these figures are momentary participants.