The intricately delicate paper cut artworks of Montreal-based artist Myriam Dion bring a whole new dimension to her preferred medium: newsprint. In her work, the splashy headlines of today’s print media are transformed and presented from a distinct perspective that forces the viewer to stop and think differently about the content they’re consuming. Characterized by elaborate geometric patterns and motifs, her work draws inspiration from a variety of art forms, including architectural details found in mosaics and textile arts—weaving, tapestry, carpets, embroidery, and lacework.
“Ornament and pattern, dexterity and craftsmanship—these words define the fundamental elements dictating my artistic practice, through which I am committed to restoring the dignity of traditional manual work, revaluing the essence of the work it involves and praising artisanal virtuosity,” Dion tells My Modern Met. “In doing so, my practice contrasts with the frenetic pace of today’s consumerist society and its ephemerality.”
The artist’s sensitivity and dedication to both the subject matter sourced from the newspapers she uses and the integrity of her own message—processed through each repetitive and meticulous slice of the X-Acto blade—is evident in her creative process and practice. She allows herself to be guided by the images and topics present in the newspapers she finds—both their political content and photographic quality—which then leaves her with an idea of what the piece will be like as a whole.
As Dion engages in the slow, painstaking process of fabricating each piece, the image forms itself as she goes from the disparate influences that spark her creativity and guide her choices. The result is absolutely captivating and draws the viewer into a new narrative world that she has created.
“Putting forward a high degree of manual dexterity and the materiality of the object,” she explains, “my artistic production allows me to instill a critical overtone in the contemporary dimensions of craftsmanship and the decorative components. It also generates an alternative understanding of our industrialized and often conditioned society. In reusing and reinvesting a means of social and political communication that are newspapers as the primary medium of my works of art, I try to redefine the use of this written support on the brink of extinction. The beautifying process I operate on the newspapers’ pages intends to distract the onlooker from its usual informative function and instigate a contemplative experience instead.”
Scroll down to see images of Dion’s stunning work, and learn even more about the artist by visiting her website.