In 2002, after accidentally leaving a book out in the rain, Hannah Lobley developed the award-winning ‘Paperwork’. She couldn’t bear to throw away her ruined book and decided to see if she could reuse it, even though it couldn’t be read again. Hannah had previously specialised in wood working during her degree, so transferred those wood working techniques to the paper. Recycling has always been important within her work and to be able to create a technique using the printed pages of unwanted books and paper became a defining factor within her practise.
In 2019 Hannah came full circle and began combining her unique paper technique with different wood, from English hardwoods to exotic wood such as Purple Heart and Padauk. The relationship between the two materials is taking her on a new journey within her artistic process. By continuing the working practises she previous employed with each material independently, she has married the two, creating ‘Paperwood Eth (ð) Collection’, with stunning results.
Hannah’s Eth (ð) collection combines the two materials that began at the same source. A short-term material is recycled to create a new shape and texture thus extending their journey. As the pieces are lathe turned each materials’ grain exposes the consequences of Hannah’s actions, revealing the unseen internal imprint as the surface is scraped away.
The shape of the character Eth (ð) is reminiscent of the pieces in this collection. An Old English letter of unknown origins, perhaps from the flourish of an Irish monks’ scribe, used in Faroese and Icelandic, it symbolises the centuries of words layered in this work. Eth (ð) are the essence of simplicity in complex surroundings.