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The Story Of A… Paper Artist
Thursday 30 May 2019
The Story of a… Paper Artist
Self-taught sculptor Kelly Joy Ladd says she hopes “to bring joy and wonderment to people through my art.”
A lifelong obsession. “As a child, I was always coloring and making things. Looking back, I realize how much that really impacted my life.”
Feeling the Disney magic. A fifth-generation Floridian, Ladd performed in shows at Walt Disney World while growing up. Between performances, she would study the craftsmanship and design of the costumes. “Today, I’m still so inspired by that.”
From wordsmith to artist. Ladd was a magazine editor who enjoyed working on her art after office hours. About five years ago, “I had my first art show. Three days later, the magazine closed. It was synchronistic timing. The universe was telling me, ‘Okay, it’s time to be a full-time artist.’ ”
Her journey to a happy medium. Ladd transitioned from painting to paper art in 2012 after her husband developed multiple chemical sensitivity and could no longer be around her oil paints. But, “he could be around paper,” says Ladd. “I love that I can take this everyday 2D material and transcend it into a 3D piece of art that is full of layers and dimension.”
The art of love.“In a way, my pieces are like love notes to my husband because of his illness. Last year I started actually writing love notes to him under the paper. For the hospital commission, I decided I was going to write a letter to my son under one of the pieces, and then I wrote a letter to the parents of the children [who are hospitalized] on the other piece.”
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