Filigree Paper Cut by Emma Van Leest
Born in 1978 in Melbourne, Australia, Emma Van Leest is a talented paper artist. She cuts her own albums of fabulous even filigree paper works. Undountedly, such delicate and filigree work needs much talent, patience and skills. Emma Van Leest recalls “My mother taught me to sew when I was quite young, and since then I’ve enjoyed the repetitive and meditative nature of hand-scale sewing. Over time I became aware of the feminine traditions which I was connecting to. In particular, the transformative nature of handicrafts – the potential to transform an everyday and normal object or material. Such as plain cotton, paper or wool, into something beautiful, valuable and useful that would be treasured for generations”.
“Paper cutting is the perfect embodiment of this idea. The skill is developed over time, through the repetition of many thousands of cuts. In India, paper cutting is practised by a small group of artisans whose families have been the custodians of the skills and knowledge for generations. Their practice is bedded in devotion to the Hindu god Krishna, so everything they do in their daily working becomes an act of devotion by default. In the same way, I began to find my own practice, involving many solitary hours of careful and painstaking cutting to be an embodiment of my devotion to the act of creating, and in particular, of creating something beautiful from the everyday”.