Recently whilst staying at M+C’s I came across this beautiful cut paper miniature hanging in an alcove. Its tiny – maybe just two inches across at most. I think it is the most wonderful, magical image and I have it as my screen saver picture and next time we are visiting I will take some better photographs and study the text with a magnifying glass.
It is apparently Victorian and made as a birthday present by a young boy, a relative, for his father. M described it as a ‘lost art’ which indeed it is but also it signals lost peace – a world where the hours of work required where not interrupted by texts and voicemail, email and the call of computer games.
I love images that hint at an undiscovered story and this cut paper forest opens up a world of possible narratives; the horseman riding through the trees and lush vegetation to….where? Perhaps the distant windmill or the forest or even the hills…………and for what reason…….to deliver a message, see his lover or maybe he is riding to his cottage for tea, homemade bread and jam and relaxation after a long journey?
The image also put my in mind of the work of the contemporary paper artist Rob Ryan, I was equally entranced when I saw Ryan’s early work some years ago, and his whimsical and often romantic mix of text also evoke stories and signal a gentler, slower paced world.
But back to the horseman in the paper forest and the hundreds of ideas this beautiful image inspires, perhaps it will be the starting point for one of our story cushions or applique works? I will share with you how it has inspired us when the ideas stop swirling and solidify a little……….