By Heidi Trautmann …
www.heiditrautmann.com

Eastern Mediterranean University, Cyprus Paper Art Association were hosts for the long-term touring IAPMA paper art exhibition that carried a double message with it. The one message is international communication, exchange of ideas on a broad level and the other is an amazing insight into the philosophy of paper making and paper art.

Ismet Tatar

The president of our local paper art association KKSD/ACPA, and artist Ismet Tatar, opened the exhibition thanking the Rector of EMU Prof. Dr. Necdet Osam and all those supporting the exhibition especially the curator and coordinator Zera Şonya and her team for setting up the exhibition at the Rauf Raif Denktaş Culture and Congress Hall. The Vice Rector Prof. Dr. Sonuç Zorlu of the Eastern Mediterranean University welcomed the guests and expressed the importance of international exchange among artists.

I could not say it better, not give a better overview on IAPMA and paper art, than Helene Tschacher, former President of IAPMA and paper art herself, who had come from Germany for the occasion of the exhibition opening. She is now retired after many years of service in the matter of this fascinating art form. Helene Tschacher and many IAPMA members have been to Cyprus before for a symposium to celebrate IAPMA’s 25th anniversary. Inci Kansu, the very first IAPMA member in Cyprus had organised the event to be in Cyprus in 2018 which I heard will be the last station for the touring exhibition. Two years on the road, my compliments, it takes a lot of organising. And, in order to reach a wide circle of viewers, the exhibition will have another appearance in Nicosia in February 2019 (see details on the end of the text).

Here is Helene Tschacher’s opening speech which she kindly sent to me:

Dear Ladies and Gentlemen, dear friends of paper and paper art.

Many thanks for the invitation to the opening of “Inspired by Paper”.

This touring exhibition with paper art started in April 2016 in Düsseldorf Germany,

Then the exhibition was shown at further 12 different locations in Bulgaria, Poland, France, Spain, Austria and Italy. So far “Inspired by Paper” has been seen by over 38,000 visitors.

Why was this travelling exhibition with 53 international paper artists sent on a journey all over Europe? The reason is IAPMA

What is IAPMA

IAPMA (International Association of Hand Paper Makers and Paper Artists) was founded in 1986 and currently has about 480 members in over 42 countries.

The aim of the association is the international exchange of knowledge, ideas and information around the art of papermaking, the different cultural and traditional paper art and inspiration in dealing with paper as an artistic source material.

Through international exhibitions, publications and congresses, IAPMA offers a forum for those who are interested and enjoy paper and paper art. The last Congresses were 2014 Fabriano, Italy, 2016 Brasilia, Brazil, and 2018 Sofia, Bulgaria. A congress is to be held in Japan in 2020.

Paper is a material with a long history, but it was not until the 20th century that it was discovered as an independently valid means of expression for art.

Abstraction in art brought the nature and value of the material into the focus of artistic interest.

Materials now become pictorial objects. Paper is no longer “only” a carrier material for drawings, printing or colour but is actually “placed in the picture”. Cubists and Dadaists used it directly for their collages.

The term “paper art” first appeared in the USA in the 1970s.

Artists such as Rauschenberg and Stella discover the work with “Paper Pulp”, from which two- and three-dimensional works of art are created. The technique of “Pulp Painting” also finds its way into their artistic work.

Over the years, “Paper Art” has developed in many directions. Works on, or with paper can be amateurishly pretty and decorative, but also convey complex concepts, ideas, thought-provoking impulses.

Despite its high historical value, the use of paper as a material has become very free and new for artists today.

Paper of all kinds seems to be available without limits.

The handmade “preciousness” has long since become a recycling material that seduces to “indulgence”: space-filling installations can be realized. Lasers and plotters open up new processing possibilities. Paper is processed in masses, alienated and combined with foreign materials without fear of contact.

The everyday handling of paper creates lightness towards the material. Its everydayness fulfils our desire to “touch and feel” and does not require excessive respect.

Possibly the access to art made of paper and the confrontation with the “paper” work of art has become less complicated for the viewer.

Paper – located between handmade preciousness and mass product, absolute vulnerability and recycled robustness – gives us the discovery of unexpected emotions and inspiring challenges.

Let yourself be inspired, stirred, addressed, wrapped up by the works made of paper in the exhibition “inspired by Paper” and find your very own approach to paper art …

… and perhaps next time before you empty wastepaper baskets into the paper bin, think about all the things that can be realized with such a piece of paper …

I wish that by this exhibition visiting art lovers, artists and young artists-to-be will be stimulated and inspired by the material paper.

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The art works from so many different countries are absolutely fascinating, I heard it said from so many viewers on the opening evening. A photo can hardly show the complexity of each art work, 2- and 3-dimensional objects, very delicate pieces in different techniques.

The show in Famagusta will be until 28 December, 2018. It will be transferred to Nicosia on 04 February 2019, see the details on the poster. The viewing times are according to official office hours.

If you want to learn more about our local association and the many events, enter Heidi Trautmann and KKSD/ACPA, you will find many reviews on interesting events in the past and in the future.