10 August 2011 b

This is another amazing piece of work by collage artist Matthew Cusick


I’ve just come across a quote from an interview with Cusick, and these are his thoughts about collage:


“Collage is a medium perfectly suited to the complexities of our time.  It speaks to a society that is over-saturated with disparate visual information.  It attempts to put order to the clutter and to make something permanent from the waste of the temporary.  A collage is also a time capsule; it preserves the ephemera of the past.  It reconstitutes things that have been discarded.  A collage must rely on a kind of alchemy; it must combine ordinary elements into something extraordinary.”


I love that idea of it being a time capsule.  That’s such a relevant idea for me to investigate from the perspective of my own interest, archaeology.  I’ve never really thought about collage before, but Cusick’s work has made me feel as if a door is opening in an unexpected place.  He is an inspiration. 



This artist is a good example of what Gayle Clemens is talking about when she writes in the introductory essay to Katharine Harmon’s book ‘The Map as Art’:


“There is a vast difference between maps that measure geographic features and those that take measure of psychological terrain.  Spend time immersed in the world of artists’ maps in this book, letting it steer you through familiar landscapes revealed in new ways and over strange topography resonating with hidden meaning.  Contemplate each artist’s use of cartography and consider maps of your own journey.  Discover how mysterious, jarring, thought provoking, and gorgeous artists’ maps can be.  Wayfinding documents as artworks have never been as diverse, or as stimulating.”


As I continue with my abstract map in pen and ink, I am considering the possibility of introducing a subtle use of collage to enhance the mystery of the place and it’s past that I’m trying to document.  This will be a new departure for me.  So thank you, Matthew Cusick for throwing open this door.


Carmen Mills





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