Artist Kevin Kichar

About Kevin Kichar

My work began with the study of art history. It naturally evolved from a background of technical drawing, computer generated art and illustration. It was enriched as I apprenticed with artisans throughout the country. I have learned many techniques along the way – including the process of handmade paper. But I did not become an artist until I incorporated those techniques into my own form of expression. Papermaking allows me to transform these influences into something new.

By blending a unique mix of fabric and papermaking techniques my media begins with the hydration of cotton and natural fibers. The pulp is heated to set color pigments creating vivid, permanent colors. Depending on the desired results the method then varies. The traditional method of screening the pulps produces flat, thin sheets. The more modern method of using a vacuum table, however, allows for greater control of sheet thickness and color pattern. Together these methods create the tapestries that form my works. Their inspiration is the organic nature of the fibers and the brilliant colors of the dye. One of my series of works employs additional techniques for applying and sealing layers of color and design into the dry cast cotton.

More recently I find my works returning to the traditional methods, working to control and experiment with the repetitive motion of screening. Papermaking offers delicate beauty and unlimited versatility. Each procedure – from hydrating to dying to drying to sculpting – is done by hand. This is what attracted me to the medium, and that is what I strive to preserve in all my work. Each piece is an original, rich in organic variation.