ALEXIS ROTELLA
Maryland US

This summer I've been helping Alexis with a collection of her haiga for publication by Modern English Tanka Press. Working so closely with such an imaginative artist/poet has been illuminating. She employs a variety of techniques: drawing, painting, monoprints, collage, photography and digital manipulation, altered books, even candy art. The full range may be seen at Modern Haiga, Ink Sweat & Tears and, indeed, in the current and previous issues of Haigaonline. This time thought I'd show a few more collages, and some haiga featuring an altered book.

The altered book pages are personal, mixing family photos and found objects, whereas the imagery of the collages emerges from the papers and fabrics employed. A number depict standing figures of women and call to mind Russian dolls, Easter eggs, Russian or Byzantine icons and folk art. One collage of a Russian grandmother appears in three versions; I've included all as they make for a good window into the artist's working process. Sometimes the haiku has been inserted at collage stage, but more often, the collage is without text. Scanned, it becomes the base image for further manipulation into what is, essentially, a digital haiga. The poem, a haiku or tanka, begins as a response to the image. Both image and text develop together until, as Alexis puts it, they "marry" into a digital haiga.

 

MIXED MEDIA: COLLAGE AND ASSEMBLAGE
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ALTERED BOOKS
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