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Transforming Rolls of Adding Machine Paper into Vibrant Color: Sculpture by Jae Ko

Jae Ko: JK 437 Red and Orange, 2013; rolled paper, colored ink(Close View)
Jae Ko: JK 437 Red and Orange, 2013; rolled paper, colored ink(Close View). Grounds for Sculpture, Hamilton, NJ. Photo by Wayne Stratz(2015).
Jae Ko: JK 437 Red and Orange, 2013; rolled paper, colored ink(Detail)
Jae Ko: JK 437 Red and Orange, 2013; rolled paper, colored ink(Detail). Grounds for Sculpture, Hamilton, NJ. Photo by Wayne Stratz (2015).
Jae Ko: JK 437 Red and Orange, 2013; rolled paper, colored ink
Jae Ko: JK 437 Red and Orange, 2013; rolled paper, colored ink. Grounds for Sculpture, Hamilton, NJ. Photo by Wayne Stratz (2015).

 

 

To make her mark she was searching for a material never before used. In grad school she had worked on rice paper, and made installations and books. “I didn’t want to use something you could get in an art supply store. I was experimenting. I would try and try until I could get a conversation going with the material. I would talk with the paper and it would talk back to me.”

That was when she started working with rolls of adding machine paper and cash register tape. She began with small spools, working flat, trying new things. Putting the paper in water, she discovered, expands it and creates new shapes. She added sumi ink to the pool of water, and the results looked like car tires. She was drawing not on paper, but with paper.  WHYY Newsworks.

I love what sculptor Jae Ko did next ~ when the amount of water she was using became too much for her studio, she went to the ocean to see what the tides would do with paper.  Stratoz and I saw her exhibition at the Grounds for Sculpture in Hamilton NJ, which will be there until February 7, 2016.

JK 437 Red and Orange was several feet tall, and bursting with ombre. Color gradation is one of my passions in the studio.  I found Jae Ko’s use of the tightly wound rolls of adding machine paper resonant with the closet of arcane office supplies I inherited when I took a job as a hospital librarian in the late 1990’s, and admire her transformation that goes beyond the “I should do something with that.”  Art as an alchemical process.

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