Sacha Baumann‘s collages don’t appear to have any aesthetic commonality. Each composition exists within itself, is a unique piece of art. It is refreshing too see. Too often collage artists get caught up in their own signature style – which by the way is a natural course of action and totally understandable – with the work suffering as a result. It becomes uniform, generic, the same stylistic rules and forms being trumpeted over and over again.
But why? Collage is the one artform which is free of convention, your work is predicated by the images you find and how you use them. This simple premise should allow an artist the freedom to play, to have fun, to experiment, to constantly change, be improvisational, musical. Bauchmann is all of these.
Although she restricts herself and focusses her work on subjects such as women’s sexuality, typography and texture she allows the images to live their own life, have their own peculiarity. And this is the difference. There’s no finished idea. The found images point her in the direction she wishes to go but each route is different. Here’s what she has to say about her process:
When I turn the pages of a magazine or book and come across images or compositions which strike me as especially arresting, my impulse is to extract the elements and place them in a new context. I want to manipulate the tone and intention, creating a new reality. This is how each artwork begins.
Once the first piece is found, I give myself restrictions as to how to appropriate it into something new. This is in part a nod to my Industrial Design training and work, in which I concentrate on problem solving for the specific needs of clients. Restrictions become opportunities for new creations.
The results of my process are collaged pieces which focus on women’s sexuality, typography, and texture. The original pieces which make up my appropriations do not entirely disappear in the new compositions, but when successful their meanings and emotional tone shift into a complete new image, sometimes whimsical, sometimes serious.