My name is Anna Simonova and I am a paper artist. I have been engaged in paper art since 2007, that is, for 15 years. I mainly work in the technique of paper relief and use both colored and white paper.
I love paper with various types of embossing and often use it in my works. Most of all I like to work with pure white paper, it seems to me that in such works the material manifests itself most fully, and appears in its present form.
The inspiration for me, as an artist, to deal with this particular material was the artist Jeff Nishinaka. I still consider his work to be a model and a guideline to which it is worth striving.
Real objects and symbols can be displayed in different ways, and I like the relief, as a transitional state between a flat sheet of paper and a three-dimensional volume of the real world. Paper is a very interesting material with a long history of use in various cultures and traditions. And in different cultures, especially pay attention to its different properties. As a material, paper can be flat and straight in the form of a sheet and at the same time plastic, rigid and soft, openwork and massive, airy and heavy. And I try to use these properties of it in my works. Any material has its limitations, and so does paper. I like to follow the material and don’t try to overcome these limitations. But staying within these boundaries, I try to use all the potential that paper contains.
I always start working with a sketch, which I make detailed, because the material does not forgive inaccuracies or uncertainties. Then I select the colors and type of paper. After I cut out and create a relief with a knife, scissors, and glue, I use cardboard where different volumes are required. I shoot the completed work with a camera and do the final retouching. Photography gives fragile paper works a second life, prolonging their short-lived existence. It seems symbolic to me.
My works are used in advertising, magazine illustrations, book illustrations, in travel guides and as art posters. I also make short stop motion animated videos out of them.
Several of my works are presented in the book “Living paper”, published in 2020 by the Hong Kong-based publisher SendPoints Publishing, along with works by other paper artists from around the world.
Paper transforms simple things into symbols and gives them special meanings: fragility, temporality and at the same time material tangibility. In this it is similar to life – material and fragile at the same time. ~ @annasimonova_illustrator