Based out of Vancouver, Canada, contemporary paper artist Tara Lee Bennett creates intricately crafted creations from tiny bits of paper. The elaborate detail in each of her artworks is dizzying, with the complex assemblage of each minute piece blossoming as a whole. In her latest series Lush, the artist turns to botanicals “both real and imagined” as her inspiration for elaborate beds of paper flowers cultivated in a monochrome color scheme to draw attention to the delicate details of each meticulous cut.
“I was born in Zimbabwe, and one of my earliest memories is of my grandma’s giant garden,” Bennett tells My Modern Met. “It was full of flowers. I like to think I’m often re-imagining and recreating those flowers from memory. Basically, everything I imagine and create is an impression of something I’ve seen, assembled in a way that I think is beautiful.”
Working from her shared studio—where painters, a jewelry maker, a printmaker, and even her little dog Frida feed her creative energy—Bennett dedicates herself to the time-consuming process of cutting, gluing, and assembling each piece until it is ready to be framed and put on display. And the beauty in each freshly-cut bloom is a beacon of hope for the future.
“My current work celebrates themes of growth and renewal,” the artist explains. “I want this series to be bursting with life and beauty. Frankly, it’s been a rough year—there’s a lot of time spent thinking about the negative parts of being a human. I wanted to bring a breath of freshness—of life and light—not just to myself, but in my art. A reminder that lush times await us all.”