“A la Monet”

  • Collage from recycled materials inspired by Monet's lily pond
  • a-la-monet

“A la Monet”

Modern collage interpretation of Claude Monet’s lily pond

For a very long time I preferred creating art filled with neat little details. My whole childhood I occupied myself by painting scenes with a lot of people in them. I even came up with back stories for every character I painted. My art was like a well-orchestrated highly detailed production with multiple actors.

So, as you can imagine, it was quite a surprise to me when I discovered how much I enjoyed doing collages. My collages are not neat or particularly thought out. Oftentimes I start working on one without having a clue as to where it’s going to go. I do them while sitting on the floor surrounded by boxes and boxes of all kinds of paper and cardboard pieces I’ve collected over the years. It’s awesomely chaotic. I don’t try to control anything and instead let the universe dictate my course of action. My art usually goes where one of the ‘treasure boxes’ I randomly grab takes me.

This particular artwork is a rare exception to my collaging madness. Years ago, a friend of mine was working for a local arts center. The center had a number of exhibits every year, one of them was called “Forgeries”. The concept behind “Forgeries” was to invite local artists to recreate famous works of art in their own style. I got invited to participate. It was around the same time I was getting excited about collages. Obviously I wanted to make my ‘forgery’ a collage.

Nowadays I’ve turned into an obsessive human squirrel who collects every scrap of paper that catches her eye. Back then I didn’t have much of a collection of stuff I could recycle for my work. So I looked around the house for anything I could use for my painting. I found a bunch of old paint samples in green and blue, a high quality Infinity catalog and a large light green gift box. The colors looked like a potential seascape. But which one?

Quite frankly I was never a big fan of seascapes, but I had to work with what I had. For inspiration, I opened one of my books of famous art works. One of the first reproductions I saw was one of Monet’s lily ponds. Bingo!

I went on to participate in “Forgeries” with my Lily pond interpretation. It was quite a success. I haven’t attempted to recreate any more famous paintings in a collage ever since, but it was a lot of fun to do it once.