Artist Statement

Odette Graskie

My practice is built around intimacy and interaction. I aim to tell stories through the exploration of paper, drawing, and the use of thread. My practice is as much an exploration of paper’s sculptural qualities and sewing’s potential to become drawing as it is about portraiture and the use of line.

While hosting interactive drawing events, the Drawing Sessions, I create temporary connections with the public, who sit for short portrait drawings. These drawings become embodiments of the affective moments between my sitters and I, containing a likeness, but also the moment of interaction. I then translate the temporary connection, love, abandonment and awkwardness into three-dimensional paper artworks and installations. These temporary connections become obsessive, emotive retellings.

Creating the three-dimensional pieces involves intensive cutting, tearing and sewing. Paper is then not only a container for drawings; I embrace the sculptural qualities of paper, letting paper occupy a space. These artworks play with light, shadow and movement. I dissect the interactions, reframing and translating the connections made into bodily artworks, which attempt to activate the space they inhabit.

I am focussed on looking closer and questioning what happens when we alter the limitations of our everyday interactions. By focussing on the small moments that exist between myself and the sitter, I explore ways that we can foster mutual recognition and connection.

Odette Graskie