Lata Gedala is a visual artist and a hand papermaker. Her concern for the environment encourages her to practice sustainable form of art making. This includes using plant materials for making paper and adopting non-toxic printmaking methods.
She was born and raised in India, where traveling was a big part of her formative years. Most of her childhood she lived amidst nature. This influenced her admiration and appreciation towards environment.
She has a Bachelor’s in Science with an emphasis in Botany & Zoology. Emigrating to the US opened the doors for her in the field of Arts. She earned an Associate’s Degree in Visual Arts with highest honors at Westchester Community College, New York. Raised in a culture where art is considered only a hobby, her intent is to make art with a sense of purpose.
Lata’s work is represented in private collections and has been exhibited in juried shows in New York, Philadelphia, San Antonio and Florence, Italy. She is a member of the International Association of Hand Papermakers and Paper Artists (IAPMA) and North American Hand Papermakers. She completed BFA with highest honors at Southwest School of Art with an emphasis in hand papermaking, photography and printmaking.
We live in a world that overlooks nature and its intricacies. To be present in a moment involves slowing down, pausing, and interacting within that world. My body of work engages the mind through sight and touch, in a way that requires the viewer to pause and, by focusing on the work, reflect on nature itself.
Handmade paper has a living quality, shaped by the plants from which it is made. Like poetry, each sheet distills and summarizes meaning to its essentials, yielding a greater understanding of the material’s uniqueness. The paper in my work is made from renewable fibers that are sustainable and fast growing, making it environmentally friendly. I fret about how our environment is constantly being exploited for economic benefits at the expense of future generations. As an artist, I feel the responsibility to address this issue in my work, to raise consciousness and arouse admiration for beauty in nature.
The emphasis on nature and its preservation is conveyed through the use of natural materials in the work. Making paper by hand and using natural dyes refer to the preservation of material resources and processes. The lengthy process of making paper and natural dyes entails slowing down, concentration, and reflecting on the beauty within nature; it further encourages us to consider what is possible using natural plant fibers and natural dyes.
My work illustrates many aesthetic and biological aspects of nature. It highlights subtleties such as the beginning of a new growth in a plants, plant cell structure as seen through a microscope, and qualities, texture and sound of leaves. I create work that demands a one-on-one interaction with the viewer where both the body and the mind are involved creating a stronger sensory impact than simply standing in front of an image. Handmade paper used as the foundation in sculptural pieces and books gives the material the structure it needs to mimic the architecture of nature. As the pages come together in the form of a book, each book contains its own individual form, that speaks of nature.
Natural Fiber, Handpaper Making, Sculpture, and Printmaking