Plumerai. French, to plume or pluck. “Je te plumerai…”

Plumerai comes from a playful experiment Jennifer Vasher had with a photograph of an earlier work. First, the photograph was digitally converted to a positive/negative image. Instead of printing the image on paper, Vasher had the negative space removed, essentially plucked, from the paper with a laser cutter. The exactness of detail that the laser can provide is juxtaposed with the ashen and organic wanderings of the resultant charred edges surrounding the fine, almost lace-like lines and makes each paper cut unique. Vasher then desired to see the design repeated and gathered together in some fashion. In collaboration with her architect husband, Max Vasher, the couple decided to make a screen of this new digital plumage.

Each panel of this screen contains 35 acrylic tiles embedded with laser cut paper. Similar to the way a photograph is made by applying light through a negative version of itself, as one moves about the piece the tiles can seem to shift from positive to negative versions of themselves. The ashen and charred edges of the thin lines permit or restrict sight of the remaining slivers of white paper. As your position and the light changes, the tiles seem to shift in the same way that the lay of a silk carpet can cause a shift in its appearance according to point of view. To reinforce the play between positive and negative in the tiles, Max created a frame that uses the positive and negative force of ceramic neodymium magnets. The unusually strong magnets act as an invisible ‘hinge’ embedded within the frame that holds the panels upright and together or to another metal surface on a wall. 

Plumeria is available for purchase at Richard Levy Gallery, Albuquerque New Mexico