Roots and the Story of Mountains and Rivers

Paper cuts made in Feutersoey, Switzerland, 2018

During a three-month residency in the Swiss Alps I reflected on the theme of roots. Could those invisible parts of plants with their erratic beauty and widely varying expressions reflect our own subconscious? Let’s assume for a moment that individuals could be classified as mountains or rivers. The mountains are the ones who stay in one place their whole life. For everyone life begins as a mountain. But, as life unfolds, some people start to wander; they transform into rivers. They flow from one place to the other and meet other rivers on their journey. Their experience as rivers makes it impossible for them to revert back to being mountains again. In the real world, neither mountains nor rivers have roots. In fact, humans aren’t mountains nor rivers. But, when speaking in poetic metaphors, it seems rather likely that a mountain would feel rooted. Following this train of thought, I was wondering what would happen to the roots of a river? In the birthplace of the Swiss paper-cutting tradition, I observed the stream of my thoughts on the subject while cutting out various roots.

With thanks to the Open Spaces Art Centre

Titles in order of appearance: Wide Root, Tiny Root, Small Root, Narrow Root, Big Root, Dandelion Root, Single Root, Doodle Root, Dragon Root

Material: paper

Frames: natural oak and glass, 3cm deep

Dimensions: varying from 24x18cm to 42x150cm