Elizabeth Hanorah Hanley is visual artist, writer, and acclaimed musician based in Tio'tia:ke (Montreal). She is completing her BFA in Studio arts at Concordia University after a 3 year hiatus during which she released her debut record and toured around the continent.
My small-scale paper works using scraps and damaged books are space-conscious; I like the idea that no storage unit would need to be rented to store them. They could just be tucked into a shelf somewhere. I've often turned to sketchbooks when larger work felt intimidating, or if I doubted the legitimacy of my ideas. I leaned into that with this art journal of sorts; I gave myself permission to make the bad, hyper-specific, entirely self-serving art that I had been trying to beat out of myself in art school. These pages, which are saturated from dollar store stickers, old nail polish, drying-up acrylic paints and alcohol inks, recycled gift wrapping paper, pop-ups and fold-outs are kitschy, garish, whimsical, and defy what art institutions would consider "serious" art. They technically fall under craft, or hobby. But they are the result of process, of play, and that makes them worth consideration. They don't need to be seen to be interesting, so they don't need to be sophisticated. I just used scraps of paper and old, damaged books I'd saved over the years and made something I thought was beautiful.