“CUT – WORK” uses a surgeon’s scalpel to create spontaneous images. A clear mind and a steady hand guide Elizabeth Gregory–Gruen in her exploration into shadow and light .
Each image is initiated in the top layer of paper. An adhesive is added and another layer of paper , this layer is cut … the process continues, until a total reverse relief is created. The organic images defined in the numerous layers of paper capture light and create shadows changing with each moment.
The initial “Nature as Architect” series explored the cut images devoid of color . The concept of divine purity is examined – to transcend color to seek serenity. Light and shadow defining the whole. Using natural elements while embracing the spontaneous cut action allows the pure essence of nature to be revealed. The incorporation of controlled color in bi-color and tri-color combinations using a neutral palette akin to those found in nature bring a new dimension to the works. When an image is viewed, it appears one dimensional and exacting. Upon closer inspection, there is movement and depth. With this visual knowledge in mind the piece takes on an added intricacy. Creating an image within an image.
“SHOTGUN” concept allows the works to evolve by introducing spontaneous 12GG shotgun blasts. This element violently transforms the unity of the cut image. The intensity of the blast is regulated only by distance. Keeping to the spontaneous tradition pellets are shot at both the front and back of the work. The blow out effect on cut-work is striking.
“SHOTGUN” illustrates the paradoxical acts of nature and the human condition. When the “SHOTGUN” series is viewed , those with no knowledge of the process see mystery. Once the process is revealed , the work meets an emotional spectrum of a giggle to horror. The act of deconstruction often ilicits shock , to reach a viewer on an emotional level is the best outcome. In the “SHOTGUN” exploration a beauty can be found through shadows of violence and serenity can be reached once again. “CUTWORK” and “SHOTGUN” series has the circle as the primary base for the images. The circle is the root of life. The circle is without end … the definition of infinity.
Growing up in Chicago, Elizabeth Gregory – Gruen was introduced to the architectural world of Frank Lloyd Wright. This inspired her imagination to experiment with 3-dimensional design using natural light and shadow. Elizabeth came to New York City in 1985 to study Fashion Design at Parsons School of Design. Graduating in 1989 with a BFA in Fashion Design she went on to work at top design houses. Her work has appeared in major fashion magazine editorials including Vogue, Harper’s Bazaar and InStyle. She currently resides in New York City with her husband Bob Gruen.