Rachel Shaw Ashton hand cuts figures and forms from watercolour paper that is spray-painted. White, black or grey on white, each separate piece of meticulously cut paper is grouped together to form a stunning three-dimensional piece. Shadows between and behind each paper form create a dramatic tension. Despite the intensely laborious process of cutting each shape by hand, Rachel’s works have a fluid energy. Some works are calm; others are frenzied as the separate cuttings sweep up into one greater scenario. In some works, Rachel conveys a sense of realisation through the stirring of movement and in others a feeling of things being static and resigned.
“I like to show figures in unusual poses caught in a split second of time. For example bodies flying or jumping representing freedom of spirit, joy or fearlessness and in contrast, I also like static figures that hopefully convey clarity, calmness, a coming to terms – whatever they invoke in the viewer.”
Rachel studied Illustration at Brighton Art School. She spent many years as an illustrator and subsequently concentrated on fine art. She recently had a solo show at The Gallery in Snape Maltings. Rachel has been represented by jaggedart since 2009.