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Culture bites: Student to share Jersey's story through paper cutting

Culture bites: Student to share Jersey's story through paper cutting

Wednesday 20 February 2019

Culture bites: Student to share Jersey's story through paper cutting

A local fine arts student will next month be sharing the story of Jersey and its culture with a Dutch audience, through a unique display created by putting knife to paper.

Layla May Arthur has always had a passion for storytelling and narratives, discovered from her thirst for books, but was inspired to try paper cutting two years ago after viewing Jersey's Paper Dialogues exhibition.

As a student at Hautlieu, she attended a workshop dedicated to the technique hosted by ArtHouse Jersey and has since continued to work to improve cutting skills. She is now in her second year of studying Fine Arts at Minerva Art Academy in the Netherlands, with paper cutting as her main focus.

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A post shared by Layla May (@laylamayarthur_papercutart) onDec 16, 2018 at 9:09am PST

She says the use of a blade releases imagery from the paper, and her illustrative style centres on a balance between which parts of the paper to cut away and which pieces to leave.

Layla’s artwork has been featured in a number of exhibitions in recent years, in Groningen and Jersey, and this month, it will be shown in Denmark.

Instead of a knife, she put pen to paper to share more about her exhibition, as well as the cultural things that have been inspiring her recently, with Express...

1. Paper Dialogues, the sequel

Jersey My Childhood home Layla May Arthur

Pictured: Layla's paper composition titled "Jersey, My Childhood Home."

The original Paper Dialogues exhibition was hosted by Arthouse Jersey in 2016. The artists Karen Bit Vejle and Xiaoguang Qiao created a narrative from paper, conceiving a conversation between their cultures and the art of paper cutting.

The dialogue continues this year in March, at The Papirkunst Centre, Blokhus, Denmark, when 3D Visual artist, Emma Reid and myself add our interpretations of Jersey's culture to the exhibition. Emma’s work focuses on the western tradition of the guardian dragon and plays with juxtaposition to consider the values of island life. My piece takes the audience on a journey through all 12 parishes on Jersey and presents my own personal associations with these different locations.

I have been looking forward to this exhibition ever since I began working on my piece in September. The original paper dialogues exhibition was the most inspiring exhibition I have ever seen and I am honoured to be joining it in this new phase. The artwork becomes an entire experience with the shadows and delicate narratives, hopefully the work can be exhibited in Jersey soon, watch this space!

2. Being Human, when female creatives come together

Arts_Centre Being Human

Pictured: Female creativity will be the main focus of the Being Human exhibition.

Being Human is an exhibition in the Berni Gallery opening on International Women’s Day. Artists will be exhibiting their work to promote the value of women’s contributions to the art world.

As a woman aspiring to be an artist, it is really important to me to celebrate all human’s contributions to the art world equally. I am really curious to see how the artists have tackled the very personal subject of what being a human means to them. The opening on the 8 March is sure to be a lively event, with musicians, good artwork and food; what more could you ask for?

3. Interviews with a Serial Killer 


Pictured: Layla says she is intrigued to get a glimpse inside the mind of a serial killer.

This choice might seem a little odd to some people but as an artist I love narratives, particularly narratives which explore the inner workings of the human mind. Audio books are my constant companion when I need to focus on creating an artwork and more often than not, I choose a thrilling mystery/murder story. 

Paul Harrison is giving this talk based on his own experiences of controversial conversations with serial killers and murders. The talk covers 12 stories and interviews, which apparently range from the sinister to the amusing to damn right intriguing. 

I am definitely more than intrigued to glimpse the reality of the mind of a serial killer. 

4. Tadhg Daly at the Blue Note Bar 


Pictured: Tadh Daly will be launching his new single on 13 March.

If there’s one thing I like to do to get away from my art, its listening to good music somewhere with a good atmosphere. Tadhg Daly is launching his new single “Hit the ground” at the Blue Note bar on 13 March, which promises to be an evening worth attending.

This will be Tadhg’s first headline show in almost two years. Monty Taft and Sam Walwyn will also be performing, making it a night where the Jersey music talent is coming out in force. If you haven’t heard of any of these artists you really should give them a listen. I personally love the raw quality of their voices, it will be an authentic experience which I highly recommend!

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