Elizabeth Gregory-Gruen’s Cut Work series is an evolving exploration of emotion initiated though free hand scalpel cut multilayered organic imagery. The layers make space for shadows to fall and move with the vibration of life where the imperfection is the perfection. There are no expectations, only discovery.
The image is determined in the top layer of paper. There are no guides or planned drawings, the images are cut from the gut. An adhesive is added under the top layer followed by another layer of paper, this layer is cut…the process continues creating multiple layers. As the cut pieces are removed, a relief image is simultaneously created. Once all the elements are in place two complete images emerge. The cutting table is clear and the process is complete. The first Cut Works were exhibited in early 2008. The initial series was white on white, devoid of all color. The stark appearance of the Cut Works embraces the transcendence of color that exuded an aura of calm. A serene and divine purity resonated from the work.
In response to the calm, Gregory-Gruen created the Shotgun series to explore the most extreme emotional reaction. The Shotgun series uses spontaneous 12-gauge shotgun blasts to violently transform the cut image. The blow out effect is striking. The cause of the blast is not announced to the viewer. With no knowledge of the violent act the viewer senses mystery. Once the process is revealed the work meets an emotional spectrum from humor to horror.
Growing up in Chicago, Elizabeth Gregory-Gruen was introduced to the architectural works of Frank Lloyd Wright. This inspired her to experiment in 3-dimensional design. Arriving in New York City in 1985 to attend Parsons School of Design and receiving a BFA in Fashion Design, she went on to design for 25 years. Elizabeth left the fashion business 4 years ago, allowing completely focus on the Cut Work series. She currently resides in New York City with her husband, photographer Bob Gruen.
Elizabeth Gregory-Gruen continues to show the evolving Cut Work series now including color and various mediums from metal to leather. More an be seen on her website and Instagram account.