Artist Hadieh Shafie has developed her own twist on the centuries-old craft of paper quilling resulting in striking abstract works. Her most recent sculptures feature hand-painted strips of paper rolled to form slender pyramids and thick coils. The individual shapes are then arranged into larger circles or rectangles for a kaleidoscopic effect.
While many approaches to paper quilling involve rolling solid pieces of unmarked paper, Shafie takes the opportunity to create full paintings on the paper before cutting them into strips. In photographs documenting her progress, she shows the paper in the midst of being painted in bold colors and adorned with calligraphy featuring Farsi text. “Repetition is a big part of my practice and at every step of how I work,” Shafie explains in an Instagram post. “Today, by the end of the day, I will have drawn the same form, thousands of times. I used to count. I no longer do. I just move forward in repetition.”
In addition to painting paper before it is rolled, Shafie will dip the scrolls into pigment creating a repeating fore-edge design when placed in their final arrangements.