Kenyon College

Alexia-Renee Derkasch


Left:Burnt Barnacles. 2013.

Blotter paper, Canson paper, Coffee, Ink, Hot glue and Yes Paste. 10,972 spirals. 8×8 feet.



White Barnacles. 2013.

Blotter paper, Hot glue and Yes Paste. 9,160 spirals. 8×8 feet.


Right: Cool Barnacles. 2013.

Watercolor paper, Construction paper, Iridescent Cellophane, Satin Pins, Hot glue and Yes Paste. 9,262 spirals. 8×8 feet.


“Being crazy isn’t enough.”

Dr. Seuss


My work is an exploration into human obsession and repetition. Snip, snip, roll, glue. Snip, snip, roll, glue. Repeat 30,000 more times, with small variations. I pushed a technique that originally seemed comforting to the extreme, to where it became tedious, painful and at times bloody.

The process of quilling, a gendered technique used by elite women in Europe during the 18th century, is central to this project because it allows for the repetition of the process to shine. Quilling was originally used to add decorative elements to greeting or holiday cards, but I wanted to make something that was more than ornamental by incorporating elements of my Caribbean heritage into the pieces.                                                                      I am intrigued by aquatic life. Swarms of fish, plant life and waves inspired me to compose these handmade spirals in complex patterns. My artwork has often focused on tiny elements that compose the overall piece. This project is comprised exclusively of those small details. I created a sculptural painting composed of thousands of tiny elements. The insanity of cutting strips of paper, creating spirals and then gluing for hours and at times days at end is not for the weak minded, nor the sane.                                 

-Alexia-Renee Derkasch ‘13

Special thanks to Alex Benthem de Grave, Matt Cobb, Lauren Schick, and Leigh Anne White


Alexia-Renee Derkasch
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