Artist Gets Creative With Recycled Goods

Thursday, May 8th 2008, 3:57 pm
By: News On 6

Artist Johanna Burton was always painting, sewing and quilting.

"And I wanted to try bringing them together and make both the painting and the quilting better by letting them feed each other a little more. So, I just started making stuff all the time; making paintings, making quilts, making sewing bits and just working until something happened," said artist, Johanna Burton.

What happened is her exhibit of art based on found and recycled materials. She painted, wove or stamped the pieces into the refreshing forms displayed at the PAC. "Touch Gently with Clean Hands" is not only the name of the show, but her instruction to viewers.

"First of all, there is the tactile experience. It's not just a visual experience, you get to touch stuff, you get to feel it. A lot of art is perfect and beautiful and behind glass and on the wall, and that's not part of you real life. But, these things, you can play with them," said Burton.

Burton stamps etchings onto used fabric, paints on old jeans and dry cleaning bags, and even creates weavings from the most unlikely material used, shopping bags.

"It's just more interesting to me to have stuff that already has marks and has wear-and-tear and has life and has a history, than something brand new from a store. Also, I'm cheap," said Burton.

So, how has being a "found artist" changed Ms. Burton's perceptions?

"One of the really fabulous things about using repurposed materials, is everything is art supplies. So, that's really fun," said Burton.