Illustration: Carolina Chocron. Sin irse por las ramas (Without beating around the bush)
Collage and photomontage has a rich and full creative history, with many artists producing work in a range of styles, and many bringing in a range of disciplines to supplement, as well as compliment the genre.
There is a definite surreal element to much of the collage work produced, both historical and contemporary, Collage and photomontage seems to have a means of connecting with a form of larger reality, a way of touching on foundational questions about our society, and about ourselves, truths that are not always the most palatable, but necessary all the same.
Artists who use this collage and photomontage system of visual artwork do a great service in opening up those significant questions, that need to be asked, or at least projected onto the public stage, and for that we have to grateful for this most significant of disciplines.
Illustration: Carolina Chocron. Abran paso (Make way)
Illustration: Carolina Chocron. Adentro llueve
The artist Carolina Chocron is a collage artist. She creates a range of systems and items within her work, using raw materials that include papers, books, maps, travel tickets, labels, old photos, magazine clippings, wires, threads, fabrics. She also uses objects and parts of objects that range from old toys to computer parts.
She collects a vast range of materials, all of which may eventually end up in a particular composition. These compositions are often narratives of the disconnected, with raw materials that when in use had no real relationship with each other, often coming from very different, diverse, and contained worlds.
Illustration: Carolina Chocron. Atravesando el universo
Illustration: Carolina Chocron. Big mamma
By encouraging creative connections within her work Carolina is creating new stories, new relationships between objects, getting them to tell another story from the one they were originally designated to tell. In this way, the artist is creating new realities, new landscapes of meaning, she is starting, or restarting stories and myths, some of which can take on lives of their own.
There is an underlying truth to the scenarios that Carolina creates, most of which quickly connect with, and strike a chord with her audience. Whether it is the social and political relationship between the sexes, the understandings and misunderstandings of our preconceptions concerning our contemporary lives, or just the absurdity of the status quo, all served up with a thick layer of irony on the part of Carolina.
Illustration: Carolina Chocron. Work in progress
Illustration: Carolina Chocron in her studio
Carolina works with a process, starting with several notebooks of ideas where she brings together a series of phrases, words, and sketches. From there she begins work out the balance images and objects that are to become the finished composition.
Her starting point, her creative hook if you like, can often be a sentence, something that she has caught in passing, a sensation or image from an everyday scene. It is the combination of the intuitive, the developmental, and the pre-established concept that allows the work to proceed. Carolina explores, researches, compiles, cuts out, disarms, mutates, transposes, over and over again, but the process is always towards the end point.
Illustration: Carolina Chocron. Mayo
Illustration: Carolina Chocron. qu+® hac+®s tan lejos de casa
The diverse disconnected elements that Carolina brings together eventually becomes a whole, a connection is formed from the very disconnection that first faced the artist. The process is obviously driven by the singular creative journey of the artist, but the initial starting point, that creative hook, that small, but significant word, sentence, sensation, or image, is the real engine of invention, and Carolina fully understands that without that initial spark of invention each piece would struggle to reach a conclusion.
Carolina is an artist that creates small worlds of juxtapositions, sometimes easily complimentary, sometimes difficultly contrasting. She stretches her compositions between the absurd and the amusing, from social questioning to reportage. Collage and photomontage has always been used as a tool in which to reflect on the social mores of the contemporary, that that tool is still alive, vibrant, and dynamic in the twenty-first century, says much about the continuing relevance of the discipline itself, but says much more about the artists that use it.
Carolina Chocron's work can be found at her site: Carolina Chocron, as well as at facebook, and instagram
All of the imagery used in this article belong to the artist, so please ask Carolina for permission before thinking of sharing them.
Illustration: Carolina Chocron. Dando el gran salto