Rachael Ashe creates hand-cut artwork and installations from paper focused on pattern mixing, and influenced by the production and design of textiles. She is attracted to techniques that involve repetitive action as a form of meditation and devotional labour. The artist is curious to see how far a simple piece of paper can be sculpted and reformed as most of the surface is removed.
Her pattern mixing paper-cut series incorporates a variety of designs, from highly structured, to organic shapes, to asymmetrical compositions, all flowing and contained within a larger form. Developing the work with an intuitive and spontaneous design approach, Rachael works on a single coloured paper and reduces the patterns to negative/positive space. It’s an additive/subtractive process of drawing the patterns in pencil on paper and then removing bits of the composition through cutting to reveal the patterns as intricate lines and shapes.
For Rachael, working with patterns has been a fascinating means of exploring history, the effects of colonialism, the intersections and influence between different cultures, the rich symbolism and meaning in patterns, and so much more. She enjoys the challenge of bringing very different types of patterns together in a single piece of work, to observe how they interact, connect, vibrate, and harmonize with one another.