Canon

 

Canon by Heather Page, wax grattage and painting on aluminum-gilded paper, each 60 inches x 11 inches

Title: Canon (Gavotte, Bourrée, Courante)
Media: Wax grattage, encaustic, and painting on aluminum-gilded mulberry paper
Size: Each piece 60”h x 11”w
Edition: 1/1
 
detail | installation | process | edition | story | related works

detail views

Canon by Heather Page, detail of Gavotte, wax grattage and painting on aluminum-gilded paper, 60 inches x 11 inches

Title: Detail of Gavotte (print on the left)
Media: Wax grattage and encaustic on aluminum-gilded mulberry paper
Size: 60”h x 11”w

Canon by Heather Page, detail of Courante, wax grattage and painting on aluminum-gilded paper, 60 inches x 11 inches

Title: Detail of Courante (print on the right)
Media: Wax grattage and painting on aluminum-gilded mulberry paper
Size: 60”h x 11”w

installation views

Reverb installation 3 by Heather Page

Title: Reverb 3
Media: Etching, relief print, rubbing, wax grattage, gilding, and drawing on mulberry paper

Reverb 3 art installation by Heather Page

Title: Reverb 3
Media: Etching, relief print, rubbing, wax grattage, gilding, and drawing on mulberry paper

 
Reverb installation 2 by Heather Page

Title: Reverb 2, front view
Media: Relief print, rubbing, wax grattage, gilding, and drawing on paper

Reverb 2 art installation by Heather Page

Title: Reverb 2, side view
Media: Relief print, rubbing, wax grattage, gilding, and drawing on paper

process

Canon is made up of three one-of-a-kind wax grattage artworks on aluminum-gilded mulberry paper made from one woodburned sheet of pine plywood and one hand-carved sheet of birch plywood.

 

Gilding is the application of very thin sheets of metal (called leaf) to a surface.
 
For each of the prints in this piece, I glued aluminum leaf to mulberry paper using a special adhesive and then burnished it flat.
 
More information on gilding
Canon by Heather Page, detail of Gavotte, wax grattage and painting on aluminum-gilded paper, 60 inches x 11 inches
Grattage (from the French verb gratter, meaning to scratch) is a technique that involves scratching away layers to reveal what’s underneath.
 
I coat a gilded print with a wax mixture, place it on a relief plate, and then scratch away the wax with razors.
 
Any raised areas on the plate (including wood grain) get scraped away, leaving the parts of the plate that I’ve carved out. The result is an inverse image of the relief block in a textured wax that sits on the surface of the paper.
 
More information on wax grattage

edition

This is a one-of-a-kind print, also known as a monoprint.

 
More information on editions

story

I named Canon after a type of music that is composed of varying parts based on one melody.

 
Canon has three parts–Gavotte, Bourrée, and Courante—that I created from different sections of the same piece of writing.
 
Although I doubt you’ll find a gavotte, a bourrée, and a courante in one musical composition, I chose those names because each is both a dance and a type of music.
 
Much like the curving text on the prints, the Renaissance era dances involve circling movements, jumps, and interweaving partners.
 
Musically, they are more separate to me. A Gavotte alternates sinuous rhythms and jumping fast notes. A Bourrée is slower and more even. And a Courante is made up of quick, big jumps.
 
I see the calligraphic marks on the prints as the music and the arrangement of the prints in a space as the dance.
 
Suspended from the ceiling, the prints sway and swirl with the site’s air currents and the movements of passersby.
 
My hope is to engage viewers in a quiet call and response dance that might spark a greater awareness in the his or her surroundings—the sounds, the air currents, the smells, the colors, the light—which she or he may then carry beyond the exhibition space.