Andrea Burgay‘s collages are an extension of her paintings, sculptures and installations, a part of her desire to find connections between organic forms in nature and the human body. This is work as play, an exploration, a journey into the unknown where materials such as found images, text, fabric and fragments of her own drawings and paintings interweave with each other to create a picture that both repulses and attracts, alludes to death, the life cycle and spiritual ceremony.
Burgay’s collages have a painterly aesthetic and textural quality that gives them an added dimension, a greater sense of purpose than the ubiquitous found image cut and paste collages created by many artists. You might say that Burgay’s collages come out of a fine art process, rather than an illustrative one, they are kinsmen to a more traditional art practice. Here’s what she has to say about her work:
I began to think a lot in terms of landscapes when making this work- physical and emotional places combining components of humans and the physical world. It is comforting to me to place the human body in this context, as it seems we are often so far removed from connection with the natural world. Recently, themes of ceremony and celebration have found their way into the work in the form of brighter colours and decorative elements like flags and lights. The idea of religion and ceremony as a path of transcendence from the mortal world interests me as well.
The materials that I use are the process of many years of saving and scavenging. The collage pieces come from natural history books, Time/Life books, fashion magazines, and sometimes my own drawings and paintings. Often, I make a piece that I’m not thrilled with and break it down to rework parts of it into a new collage. Fabric stores, thrift stores, friends, and various saved clothes or bags are reworked in the sculptures. I’m interested in materials that have interesting textures, odd colors, things that look organic, and sometimes things that are very ugly. The combination of what’s considered traditionally beautiful or ugly is often what appeals to me in the stage of choosing materials.