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Artist’s contemporary papercuts premier at MC Art Gallery

Lorraine Bubar installing her exhibit at the Moorpark College Art Gallery Photo credit: Lorraine Bubar

Lorraine Bubar installing her exhibit at the Moorpark College Art Gallery Photo credit: Lorraine Bubar

Lorraine Bubar installing her exhibit at the Moorpark College Art Gallery Photo credit: Lorraine Bubar

By Briana Barajas

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A new solo exhibit expresses hierarchies and movement through a contemporary paper-cutting technique.

Lorraine Bubar opened her solo exhibit in the Moorpark College Art Gallery this week. Bubar’s depictions represent movement both within ecosystems and her own experiences. The MC Art Gallery, located in the Administration Building offers an opportunity for students and established artists to showcase their work. Bubar’s exhibit will be open from Jan. 24 to Feb. 19. Bubar will detail her process during a talk and reception on Feb. 6 at 11 a.m. in the Applied Arts Building, Room 136.

After discovering that paper-cutting exists in many culture, Bubar became inspired to create her own interpretation of the art form. By approaching paper-cutting, as she describes, “in a painterly way” the contemporary artist draws on her background with animation and watercolor to compose a drawing and then experiments with cutting and layering colored paper.

“I feel like I’m doing a painting even though I’m just using an x-acto knife because I think in every spot of color that’s there, I’m thinking ‘what’s the color, what’s the value, what’s the texture,’” said Bubar. “I don’t plan my colors ahead of time, so it’s very spontaneous and I get to experiment a lot with colors. If I don’t like a color, I can just cut it out.”

Bubar’s residence at Denali National Park and Zion National Park along with her travels around the world reveals the inspiration behind her work.

“I collage together different images to create an overall feeling of a place; my whole experience of a place,” said Bubar.

Scenes from the arctic, desert, forest, tropics, and urban cities are represented in this collection. Although the work draws its viewers in with its incredible detail and radiant colors, Bubar hopes to address the danger these landscapes and ecosystems are in due to climate change, deforestation, and agriculture.

“I just learned that in Mexico [monarch butterfly] habitats are being threatened because they’re cutting down where they stay for avocado trees,” said Bubar.

In her portrayals of urban scenes Bubar contrasts the city’s beauty with the realities of abject poverty. In the work titled, “Drive by,” the beauty of the Santa Monica pier is contrasted with “the really crowded tent city of the homeless.

The theme of movement and migration is present throughout her work. Most notably in the piece titled, “Keep on moving,” Bubar presents monarch butterflies, who go through four or five generations before they complete a migration; arctic terns, who have the longest migration of any bird species; and then feet, representing immigrants, refugees and people who are on the move for political, environmental, or economic reasons.

“I hope as people pass through the gallery, they stop and look at them closely, and take time in the same way I hope people experience those natural environments,” said Bubar. “They stop and take the time to see what’s there.”

The title of her collection,”In Route,” was chosen to represent her personal journeys and a worldly perspective.

“The collection of work shows my route of how I’ve been living the last few years of traveling and also my artistic route and how so many people around the world are in route right now,” said Bubar. “Even the flora and fauna in this world being threatened, even species surrounding us are in route.”

Lorraine Bubar will be giving a talk followed by a reception on Feb. 6, during which she will detail her process, how she became interested in paper cuts, and their history. The talk will be held at 11 a.m. in the Applied Arts Building, Room 136.

For more of her work, visit her website: She can also be found on Instagram: @lorrainebubarartist and on Facebook: Lorraine Bubar Artist.

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