Monday, April 23, 2012

Raven's Paper Jewelry - Raven Murie

This is what Raven Murie of Ohio has to say about paper... "It is endlessly interesting. The things that can be done with it... I've cut it and folded it, colored and crumpled it, sewn and torn and dipped and glued it, painted and pierced and done everything to it but eat it."

Currently she uses durable flax, abaca, and other fibers to make paper from which she creates one-of-a-kind wearable art pieces. Because handmade paper is durable and lightweight, it's a perfect material for earrings.

Paper Earrings - Cerulean Flowers
Cerulean Flower Earrings

These ruffled blossoms are shaped from premium flax fiber.

Paper Earrings - Umber Abaca Fiber
Umber abaca fiber earrings

This pair reminds me of tiny dancers wearing floaty dresses.

You might be fascinated to hear from Raven about her main occupation:
"By day I work at repairing phone lines --- climbing poles and slinging ladders around. One thing I was happy to discover: copper phone wires and paper make fascinating partners. When flax paper dries around wire, the magic is complete. The paper shrinks, buckles, and makes all sorts of interesting wrinkles.

By the way, if you happen to know (or if you yourself are) another woman doing the job I do, let me know. I'd love to meet a sister/tech. The guys I work with are great, but it would be even cooler to meet someone more like myself."

Paper Earrings - Ribbed Aurora Swirl
Ribbed Aurora Swirl

Raven made this colorful pair from highly beaten abaca fiber. She applies earth pigments in crayon form to the wet surface of the strong abaca sheets just as she pulls them from the vat.

I asked Raven how she happened to start making fibrous paper: "I came to papermaking by chance: my weaver's guild offered a one-day workshop in papermaking and it caught my fancy for a time. A few years later I had a chance to take a college course taught by the printmaking artist, Julie Harris, and by the time the quarter ended, I was truly launched. I read everything the local libraries offered and began to collect and build papermaking equipment so I could continue to explore at home."

Paper Earrings - Jellyfish
Jellyfish

And yes, this pure flax paper pair really do resemble jellyfish with swinging tentacles! Raven often turns to nature as inspiration for her designs.

"In my own house there are lampshades I have made over the years, reflecting the paper I was producing at different stages. About three years ago I hit upon a technique I liked so much for its undulations and organic character that I started experimenting with making it in miniature. The earrings began there. I have made other jewelry forms that I wear myself: hairpins, hatpins and decorative pins, still in the trial stages."

Paper Earrings - Green Spires
Green Spires

Here she sculpted and stacked handmade abaca and flax papers and interspersed the layers with silvery-blue glass beads. Raven says the paper discs are flat when wet, but as they dry, they take on all sorts of interesting curves.

Paper Earrings - Plum Cape
Plum Cape Earrings

These do look just like little, swishing capes, don't they? She makes them with pure flax paper, and again, adds pigments to the pulp at the vat stage, which makes the color permanent.

See many more earring examples at Raven's Paper Jewelry. Raven is @papyrifera on Twitter.

9 comments:

Anonymous said...

Hi Ann
I loved reading about Raven's adventures with paper and her work up the poles! I love the different shapes,colours and beads used to make her one off pieces. I hope Raven makes many more discoveries in her work with paper.
Licia

Maureen said...

Very creative. Lovely packaging, too.

I like the discovery about materials that Raven's made as a result of her day job.

Molly Smith said...

Very unusual and so pretty! Her different designs are awesome. Thanks for sharing!
-Molly

Baukje said...

brilliant and beautiful colors I love your work!
Greetings Baukje

Kurlikins said...

Sensational! Very interesting read-who would've thought your job can influence your art like that!

SUGANTHI said...

Very very beautiful. I love the jelly fish. Such beautiful colours and so very perfectly finished.

Teddie Seeley said...

Thank you Ann,

What beautiful earrings. I will definitely go to Raven's site.

chillin with Quillin said...

oh wow these are gorgeous!!!!
Paula

MetalFimo2 said...

complimenti per i bei orecchini uno piu' bello dell'altro ,passa da me www.metalfimo2.blogspot.com

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