It has been a few weeks since we moved to Harare, Zimbabwe.  Until I can start work, I am trying to take advantage of the extra time to create and already my head is swirling with inspiration and new ideas.   The challenge is limited material and tools since it will be a while until our belongings arrive.  Working with what I have has brought about a new series that I am quite excited about.


It started with a tree, in a clay pot, in my garden, that died.  I was looking at the branches and decided that all the dead little bits needed to be removed.  Then I decided that the roots needed to be dug up intact.  In keeping with some of my favorite materials, I played with the idea of incorporating glass from now emptied bottles and handmade paper.   I do realize I am back to roofs again, though in Armenian they were ceramic church roofs topping my bottle lamps.  Here they are these floating light little drawings that vaguely reference the traditional thatched roofs.

I have set to work with the paper roofs.   If you are interested in the process, here it is.  Otherwise, enjoy the photos.  There will be more to come with this piece and other pieces utilizing discarded parts of trees.

  1. Folded paper box- evolved to thatched roof shape.
  2. Inked paper- settled on sketches of plants.
  3. Wax experiment- ink holds, slightly translucent and flexible.
  4. Color addition test with pastel, tested with wax- successful though colors dull.
  5. Water proof? yes. :)
  6. Switch to parchment paper during waxing process, better wax barrier to iron.
  7. Thatching texture in spots- sewing nixed, roots and tall grass nixed.
  8. Settled on gluing bits of short grass in places with inked side before waxing.
  9. Wax test over grass- works.
  10. Seal seam with thin Nepalese handmade paper, followed by final wax.