Each artist who participated in the First EVER Scrap Bag Challenge that ran from March 22, 2014 til Earthday, and answered my virtual interview questions will be featured here over the next few weeks. The Scrap Bag Challenge took place, on the fly, as a part of the unearthing and purging in my studio. As Shire City Sanctuary comes to be, my studio shrinks with glee - allowing me renewed freedom from stuff and allowing our Makerspace room to accommodate a sewing room, screen printing shop, and teaching space.
We had over 50 responses within 24 hours of posting on facebook and sending our eblast announcement! 50 boxes were shipped across the world from Germany to Australia to our neighbors here in Pittsfield! Wowsers! The EXCITEMENT!! So here we go! Karen Arp Sandel ~ TaKe IT AwAY!!
Three sentences about me:
I am a collage artist with a passion for giving 'Power to the Pieces!". As co-founder of FeMail , I avidly make and mail art through the USPS. I teach year round workshops and classes at Is183 Art School of the Berkshires.
To complete my challenge, I used paper, a vintage Royal typewriter, my sewing machine , buttons and postage stamps.
If you know me, you know I will try to send anything I make through the mail as FeMail art. So, when thinking about how to use my scrap bag- I suddenly found myself brainstorming ways to up cycle the post cards in the box. Why not use the felted wool to make fabric collages, like I would with paper? I decided to make wooly post cards with fictional messages. Then I used more of the scraps to create a small mail box in which to store and display the wooly collage post cards. I recycle a cigar box and some very interesting vintage postage stamps in combination with a postal red ,white and blue color scheme.
To surprise my guitarist husband, I created a "bottle cap guitar " with a beautiful but damaged half-size acoustic guitar (no longer playable) and my fabulous bottle cap collection from all over the world. He displays it ever so fondly as it is a symbol for all the things he loves!
"Art is not Separate" is my Art mantra. My advise is "make art every day "and experiment with everyday materials whenever you can. Make free art and send it through the mail. Create your own Mail Box Museum by collaborating on mail art with your friends!