Collage Starter Pack Nº59
Introducing Ria Bauwens, Belgium Collagist
/DRI:M/ARTZ: Can you tell me a little about yourself?
Ria Bauwens: Mailart was my first discovery far before I started making collages. Back then there was no internet and there was this excitement and expectation of receiving an answer (or not) and getting to know someone slowly. The mailart community I got to know back then is still active in the same way, and along came the blogs, IG, and FB—a lot has changed since.
DA: Why do you make collage packs?
RB: I started the open collage call last March to celebrate the yearly World Collage Day (as initiated by Kolaj Magazine in 2018 and followed by so many others now). My idea was to invite people who visit the local library and also my collage friends that I have gotten to know through mailart and social media. I think of it as a community building instrument, getting (non) collage makers to know (daily) collage makers and find out all about it and each other. In order to make it a bit easier I thought that collage packs would be helpful, but in fact that was a mistake. I hardly got any collage made from the items in the precomposed pack. I don't know the reason for this. Is it because people would not dare to use the preselected papers or because they did not know where to start? In times of Corona it was not possible to actually have a small workshop and work together with people interested in learning the process of collage making. Hopefully that will be possible in the near future.
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Assorted Paper Bits / Ria's Studio & Process
DA: What gave you the idea to offer them to the collage community?
RB: Making packs for the 'real' collage community is another thing and receiving scraps from someone else's collage table is kind of a treat. This is something that happens spontaneously when corresponding with another collage maker/mailartist. And of course this is completely f r e e (mailart spirit).
DA: How do you go about designing the cut-out pages? Specific themes?
RB: Templates go with designing a page and the Cut Outs started as pages where I laid out and glued carefully selected scraps and then stitched them to give them a specific cut out place on the paper to tear out for usage. I am in the middle of making a series of Cut Out pages on A4 paper size. When finished I would love to make them into a Zine/Book for publishing.
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Collage Packs Containing Assorted Ephemera
DA: Are they analogue bits? Digital? Snail mailed and/or downloaded?
RB: Everything is analogue. The collage kits were specifically made for the Open Call to celebrate World Collage Day 2021. The Cut Out pages are a personal collage Series.
DA: What do the kits cost?
RB: I distributed about 60 collage packs, with a content of selected items—used postage stamps, vintage magazine cutouts, letraset, and old paper. The packs are free of charge!
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World Collage Day 2021 Poster / Ria in the Library for World Collage Day 2021 / Mailart Collage Recieved for Open Call
DA: Any future projects that you are working on?
RB: A lot of collage series are in the making and collabs whenever possible.
Check out Ria's video featuring her individual Cut Out pages. She has an exciting project in the making, so be sure to follow her links to stay tuned. Enjoy!
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Instagram | @sintamandsbergknipt2021
Instagram | @necessityofnonsensemailart
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