⟨ Art ⟩

Beyond Fragility

Paper Art By Charlotte Bourrus

Words / 文心
Translation / Iris Heung



Image Courtesy Of Boul Rostan

你有試過把不同的圖案列印出來貼到牙籤的頂端嗎?然後一根根的插在果凍或蛋糕上,像是用它們漂亮地佔據領土。The Map 的創辦人、法國藝術家 Charlotte Bourrus 正正是這方面的專家,當然她的作品比我們隨手的要複雜而美得多,大概只要看到任何一個她創作的玻璃球,就會懂了。

「運用拼貼主要是因為我一直在搜集很多資料 ……它令我可以將所有東西都隨意擺放,更加可以修好它們,令他們看起來更好。可能是由小時候從撕紙張這動作發掘的吧!」開朗的她邊笑邊說,笑容可親真誠。她是一個與現實很貼近的藝術家,除了因為談話時俐落豪爽的語氣和節奏明快的語速外,她作品中的元素一點也不夢幻。「我的作品關於地理、地球、國家,甚至領土,還關於城市中的人類……我會說它們是有歷史性的東西,就像我們 The Map 現在做的這些以國家為主題的玻璃球,其實是我個人主觀的視角所看到的東西(甚至世界),是我去選擇用什麼元素去代表一個國家。」她轉動了一下眼珠,說:「說得更準確,這些玻璃球是一些見證。它們呈現了各個國家不同階段的面貌,而當然裡面的元素也會隨著我的角度而改變,二十年前我去紐約一定就是非常興奮,享受無窮無盡的派對啊!現在去的話,感覺必定會不一樣的。其實就是我在生的時候世界各地的樣子吧,哈哈……

算是半個旅遊家如她,創作靈感來自旅遊的體驗與見聞也是再正常不過,她說:「除了旅遊的經歷及見聞,更大的部分還是日常生活,像是我的家人和女兒們,也可以只是看著海好幾個小時,或者欣賞美麗的風景。反而如果說創作的動力,就是認識新的人,與他們聊天談話呢!The Map 也有製作客製化的玻璃球,我很愛做這個!就像是走進別人生命中。」她的一隻手掌打側向前比劃,表達穿過別人記憶的過程。對於現在可以寓工作於娛樂,甚至因為 The Map 而達成環遊世界的夢想,她憶述:「自從十八歲的時候與姐姐同遊柬埔寨後,就好像享受不在家的日子吧。」她嘴角微微上揚,笑容中帶點叛逆。

我想她富有冒險精神,應該會贊成每個人都多去旅遊增廣見聞吧。她卻淡然地說道:「有機會到處旅遊當然很有趣,但是現在旅遊也不便宜呢(吃吃笑著)……更重要的應該是要探索自己的領地,去認識新的人,把握機會去學習新的知識或事物;要記得保持開放的心態,也要去相信別人,這些是我會鼓勵大家去做的。」在看似脆弱的紙張背後,是堅定的信念在支撐著。

Have you ever made custom toothpick flags with your own prints and use them on jello or cakes as if they are beautiful signs to mark territories? The French artist Charlotte Bourrus, the founder of The Map, is an expert in this field, except for the fact that her works are way more complex and delicate than our random handicraft. Just take a glimpse at the globes she made, then you would understand the charm of her works.

“I enjoy making collages because I have been collecting a lot of materials… This technique allows me to place the materials randomly and fix them at the same time. It simply makes them look better. This preference can perhaps be traced back to my childhood habit of scrapping paper.” She laughed as she said so. Her laughter and smile are so genuine and gentle. As an artist, she seems to be quite down to earth. Not only is she candid and expressive, but the themes of her works are not at all magical. “My works are all about geography, the planet, countries and even territories. They are also about human in the city. I would say, they are connected to history. In The Map, we are making globes that are themed around different countries. They are, in fact, how I see things and the world from my subjective point of view; I constructed those countries based on the elements I chose,” after a short pause, she said, “To be more precise, these globes are some kind of witnesses. They represent different phases of each country, but of course, they are shaped by how I viewed those places. I was absolutely thrilled about going to New York twenty years ago; I would party non-stop. If I go there now, it must be a different story. In fact, they are how different places in the world look during my life,” she laughed again.

As a part-time traveler, she can naturally get inspirations from all the experience on the road. “Compared to things and people I see in my journeys, my day to day life is still the greatest source of inspiration. My family and my daughters all play a role in it. Sometimes one also gets enlightened by staring at the sea for hours or just by immersing oneself into a beautiful scenery. If we are talking about finding the motivation to create works, then my secret is meeting people and having a chat with them. The Map also produces custom-made globe which I enjoy making a lot. It almost feels like entering into other’s life,” she said while using one hand to gesture a move to express how it is like entering someone’s memory. She is grateful for having found enjoyment in work, not to mention living the dream of traveling around the world because of The Map. She recalled, “Ever since I embarked on the trip to Cambodia with my sister, I began to enjoy the days on the road more.” A soft smile then curled the corners of her mouth, with a slight note of rebellion.

With her adventurous spirit, I thought she would probably encourage people to set off their own journeys to broaden their perspective. However, she just said in a calm manner, “Seeing new places is always an amusement, but traveling is becoming expensive nowadays,” she laughed, “What is more crucial is the exploration of own’s realm; it is important to meet new people, grasp the opportunities to learn new things, and always keep an open mind to learn to trust others. This is what I encourage everyone to do.” Behind the seemingly fragile paper production is a strong faith that guides her through life.