Saturday, 5 October 2013

Magic Tape

“Sometimes magic is just someone spending more time on something than anyone else might reasonably expect”, someone quoted Teller, a sixty-four years old full-time magician since 1975, to refer to Sarah DiNardo’s artistic production. And, in fact, nothing would more fittingly describe what she, herself, calls her “love for using tape”.

The revelation of what was to become Sarah Anne DiNardo’s unexpected and amazing art came to her at an early age, when the feeling of handling and touching objects is very strong and can exert an intense attraction on people. A Massachusetts-based artist, she confesses that she was particularly drawn by the feeling of touch offered by tape – yes, that is the material she works with – and she states that she “fell in love with the tactile feeling of tape when she was three years old”.

DiNardo skilfully crafts unique tape sculptures, by patiently rolling masking tape, which then undergo a special kind of treatment to be kept in place, protected and dust-proofed. As she says, “the act of rolling tape is [her] meditation” and she seems to face her talent very unpretentiously and as something quite natural. To use her own words, “art is finding beauty in something. Anything. So, no matter who you are, or what you do (...) you are an artist if you can find beauty in the world.” And she goes on, “the first step is merely taking the time to notice. I live my life by finding beauty in the trivial and spreading my light to others through my art.”

However, she is incredibly talented and her art is truly unique and surprising. She actually breaks with what is commonly called the “mainstream” in her innovative use of materials and forms. Moreover, if we take a close look at her work, we can realise that it is the product of a very creative process which implies great patience and skill, as well as a constant search for different shapes and sizes.

DiNardo’s inspiration further seems to flow as the creative process itself develops, in a way such that the artist seems to be led by her own creations, in a relationship that is both intense and successful. Another relevant aspect of her art, which cannot be neglected or underestimated, is the fact that she works exclusively with a very trivial material, thereby finding herself a niche within innovative groups of artists working in what can be regarded as alternative and/or sustainable art.

In fact, Sarah DiNardo may be right when she says that she finds beauty in the trivial and expects to be able to convey it to others. And we have to admit that her fascinating artworks are an invitation for us to touch them, thus sharing her own love for the tactile feeling, and to let ourselves get involved in the magic she does with tape.

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