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Delicate Nature Collages Held Together by Thread Reflect a Time of “Ecological Mourning”

Collage Art

Collage artist Jennifer Murphy is inspired by interconnectedness. While this interest informs much of her work, it is particularly evident in The Shadow of Sirius, a series of delicate nature collages comprising flora and fauna cut-outs held together by thread. “Wedding the specimens of the naturalist with the visions of the fantasist,” these eye-catching pieces explore our real-life environment through a surreal lens.

Each of Murphy's collages is made up of a collection of photographs that work together to create a bigger picture. In order to aptly illustrate the artist's focus on the natural world, these smaller images exclusively feature animals, plants, and organic objects, like sticks, stones, and seashells. Once artistically arranged by Murphy, these photos form silhouettes of similarly-themed subjects, with butterflies, birds, and branches among her most revisited motifs.

In addition to showcasing the beauty of nature, these collages speak to more existential themes—namely, of loss. Relevant to the artist's personal life and to the world as a whole, this concept has recently given new meaning to Murphy's lifelong practice. “Although I have worked in collage since I was a child, I really began to explore large-scale, sculptural collage after the death of a dear friend and close collaborator ten years ago,” she explains. “This series comes at another time of loss, both personal and I believe collective. We now live in a time of ecological mourning and are in desperate need for paths to rediscover hope.”

It is this pursuit of hope that has inspired Murphy to create The Shadow of Sirius, a project that creatively shines a light on the earth's diverse ecosystems and, most importantly, reminds us that everything is connected.

In The Shadow of Sirius, artist Jennifer Murphy crafts delicate nature collages that reflect “a time of ecological mourning.”

Collage Art

The Shadow of Sirius The Shadow of Sirius The Shadow of Sirius Jennifer Murphy Jennifer Murphy Jennifer Murphy Jennifer Murphy

These exquisite pieces were recently featured in a solo show at Toronto's Clint Roenisch Gallery.

Jennifer Murphy Nature Collage Nature Collage Nature Collage Nature Collage Nature Collage

Jennifer Murphy: Website

My Modern Met granted permission to feature photo by Clint Roenisch Gallery.

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Kelly Richman-Abdou

Kelly Richman-Abdou is a Contributing Writer at My Modern Met. An art historian living in Paris, Kelly was born and raised in San Francisco and holds a BA in Art History from the University of San Francisco and an MA in Art and Museum Studies from Georgetown University. When she’s not writing, you can find Kelly wandering around Paris, whether she’s leading a tour (as a guide, she has been interviewed by BBC World News America and France 24) or simply taking a stroll with her husband and two tiny daughters.
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