Congruence | Susan Ruptash

October 25 – November 12, 2023
Opening Reception: Saturday, October 28, 2 – 5 pm
Artist Talk: Sunday, November 12, 2 pm

The works in Congruence continue my explorations of the special qualities of Japanese washi.

Working primarily with heritage washi, I apply minimal interventions to form a new expression for each sheet of washi. I want to draw attention to the translucency, gorgeous fibre structure, subtle colours, and surface textures, as well as the hidden qualities of strength and the subtle differences caused by the choice of fibre, drying method, even the quality of the water used in the process. 

Congruence refers to objects that have the same shape and size. Many of the works in the exhibition are made up of multiple components of the same shape and size. I am constantly seeking ways to amplify a single sheet of handmade washi – one method is to break the sheet apart (through cutting or tearing) and re-assemble the parts of a full sheet to create a new statement. I also seek the act of repetition in my work to honour the repetitive work of the heritage washi makers who create this incredible material.

Congruence also refers to compatibility – I look for congruence in the materials I choose to work with the washi – natural linen thread, fine copper wire, and traditional konnyaku starch, as well as the pairings of different washi.

Susan Ruptash is a Toronto washi artist who works in a variety of paper arts including explorations of handmade heritage washi, printmaking and bookmaking, building on a lifelong fascination with the properties and possibilities of paper. Susan’s career as an architect has informed her explorations of structure, form, materiality and process. Susan is a member of Propeller Art Gallery, the Ontario Society of Artists, Open Studio, and the Canadian Bookbinders and Book Artists Guild. Susan’s work often includes embedded efforts that may not be readily apparent on viewing, but contribute to the finished piece through a curiosity and respect for the materials. For this reason, many of her works appear minimalist at first glance.

Special thanks to our community partners, donors, and supporters. 

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