If you can appreciate Yulia Brodskaya’s paper portraits, you’ll enjoy Nick Georgiou’s newspaper sculptures. The native New Yorker, who is currently based in Tucson, Arizona, draws inspiration from his surrounding environment. Using local newspapers and old, discarded books, Georgiou forms eye-catching sculptures that have a certain alien appeal. His intention with this series, entitled Paper Elegies, is to present the death of the written word and, perhaps, offer an alternative use for the soon-to-be archaic form of literature.
In this highly digital era, we’re seeing the rapid extinction of physical books, newspapers, and other forms of printed word. They are transforming into artifacts. Children born today are so accustomed to touchscreen devices, like the iPad, that a magazine often appears foreign to them (as seen in this video). Georgiou’s series brings to light the possible impending obsolescence of books with the advent of new technologies. (Also, is it just me or do some of his 3D sculptures look like robots?)
If you’re in Arizona, you can see Paper Elegies first-hand at the Temple of Music and Art where it will be on exhibit until November 22, 2011.
I understand that your work is inspired by “the death of the printed word/world, economic collapse, political and environmental uncertainty.” Can you elaborate on this for us?
During the beginning of this century – like most people, I saw my entire music and film collection shrink into my computer. I started communicating mostly via digital text and began interacting with paper in a very different way.
The general population has shifted away from print consumption. The need for print is disappearing the more we’re armed with digital screens. Books and Newspapers are becoming artifacts of the 21st century.
Technology may have desensitized us to certain aspects of our daily lives, but art with the use of technology remind us that we’re human. For all our progress, there are societal issues, like the environment, war, economic uncertainty reminding us to slow down, look around and interact with each other.