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What is my technique?


Chigiri-e (ちぎり絵) is a Japanese art form in which the primary technique uses coloured paper that is torn to create images, and may resemble a water colour painting. The technique dates from the Heian period of Japanese history when it was often used in conjunction with calligraphy. Handmade paper is essential for the creation of chigiri-e images. (I don't hand make my paper)

Collage (from the French: coller, "to glue";[1] French pronunciation: ​[kɔ.laʒ]) is a technique of an art production, primarily used in the visual arts, where the artwork is made from an assemblage of different forms, thus creating a new whole. (My work is 95% newspaper as it is printed, with no paint or dye added)


I call what I do collage, while some have said it is painting with paper. Names don't really bother me. Little bits of paper; BIG art!


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Artist Statement

Influenced by a waste-not-want-not upbringing, I urge you to ‘make do’ with the newspapers I use to create fine art collages with a chigiri-e  technique and wabi-sabi aesthetic. Considering the amount of trees cut daily to produce newspaper, it is my mission to elevate this lowly product, and the viewers appreciation of natural resources, to match the stature of the trees by slowly layering little bits of paper into big art. My up-cycled art honours the death of the trees used to create it and celebrates life in all its forms. Find a tree to hug and listen to the heartbeat of the earth beneath its bark.

Partial Artist Bio

Rhonda Barrett is an artist from Newfoundland with a background in Architectural Technology, currently living in Nova Scotia, whose study of paper and Japanese arts finds her working in a chigiri-e style with newsprint. The waste-not-want-not attitude and nostalgia of her maritime upbringing is paramount in her choice of medium and also informs many of the images she captures. The use of newspaper as her primary medium is a nod to the temporal arts and our ideas of material value. She works out of her studio in Halifax, NS.
In 2020, Rhonda created the Canadian Collage Collective which aims at elevating collage in Canada. 
She is currently a member of Visual Arts Nova Scotia (VANS),
and The Paper Artist Collective (UK). Her work has been seen in solo exhibitions and group exhibitions in numerous galleries in Nova Scotia, Vancouver, BC and Montreal, QC. She has been featured in Kolaj Magazine, Murze Magazine, The Chronicle Herald, The Coast Magazine and on Global Halifax News Morning.




Little bits of paper; BIG art! 3883 Kencrest Ave., Halifax, NS 

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