“In The Studio” with Jacqueline Mallegni
Lauren Sinner January 10, 2018
SDA member Jacqueline Mallegni takes us inside her studio and process with 2018’s first “In the Studio” article. Working in a wide variety of media, Jacqueline’s creates sculptures inspired by natural forms. Read more to get to know one of our recent members!
I began making handmade paper in 1989—falling in love with how the light captured textures and colors within the fiber. This love of light and texture took me on a long journey creating custom lighting for trade exhibitions, commissions and environmental site-specific installation projects. Isamu Noguchi’s book “Space of Akari and Stone,” changed my course from making traditional lighting fixtures to sculptural lighting that are one-of and unique. The installations featured in this book also inspired me to learn how to carve stone, so I chose to study with Berkeley-artist Patricia Bengtson in the early 2000s—learning how to bring to light what lived inside stone.
My creative process has always been driven by my love of the calm and chaos found in nature. Line, shape, form, and light can be seen in the most simple compositions such as the delicate form and line found in a birds nest; the negative space found in the shape of a tree; the light shining behind a leaf; the movement of a water ripple.
In response to my relationship with nature, I create mixed media minimalist sculpture with a focus on the concept of the spaces between exploring the perception of a landscape. What is it we, as humans, choose to see? The spaces between us and them, inside/outside, and contemplation/chaos. The sculptures I create are small installations made with rattan, foraged natural materials, kozo and gampi handmade paper, and cast flax and silk roving fiber that are sometimes embellished with mono-prints infused with indigo and sumi ink. The intention is to evoke a sense of place and one’s relationship to that place. To pause and reflect on the beauty within.
All these aspects of nature inform my art practice along with Japanese aesthetics and philosophy of wabisabi (a worldview centered on the acceptance of transience and imperfection) and yugen (a profound, mysterious sense of the beauty of the universe and sadness of human suffering).
My new Santa Fe studio with natural light and simple archecture, provides a supportive container in which to explore variations on a theme and to discover how the influences of living in an urban environment will unfold within my creative process. Currently, I teach papermaking workshops and continue to create fiber sculpture in response to life’s journey, the human condition and the natural world.
– Jacqueline Mallegni
- Studio visits are welcome, by appointment. Visit www.mallegni.com.
- Upcoming workshop on Saturday, January 13th: Shaping Space with Flax Fiber
If you’re also interested in being a part of SDA’s “In the Studio” fill out our Submission Form