Collages for 2021

This year, I intend to make more collages and poem collages to add to those I made in 2020, and previously, which I’ve shown you in several posts, such as Collage Poems (from 2017); Once Upon a Lockdown (sequence of nine prose poems/collages from 2020); Collages of Exasperation (also from 2020).  In my collage work, I’m inspired by poet, writer, artist, and teacher Sophie Herxheimer.

I’m mentioning my collage project now as a means of recording my intention to do the work, and in an attempt to avoid procrastination. I would love to set myself a target of at least two pieces a month but I am going to say at least one piece a month, to be less demanding on myself.  Having said that, I have in January 2021 made two pieces so far.  Hurray!

For my first 2021 piece, I’ve used a cut-up calendar from last year, headlines from The Guardian newspaper (which I tend to buy on a Saturday) and flowers and foliage from my garden.  I’ve made another piece in tandem, without any foliage, so that I can retain this month’s collage.  I plan on doing this with every piece I make from now on (as much as possible).  Last year, I used a lot of natural materials (flowers and foliage) in my collages which meant that I couldn’t physically save them – I only photographed them.  I set up a separate Instagram account for my visual pieces last year – @andothermakings.  I recycled and composted all unsaved materials, by the way!

Here is my January 2021 collage (with foliage):

‘Two Robins Glued Together Pretending to be Cheerful’ (January 2021) – collage by Josephine Corcoran

The second image shows a version of the same collage without natural foliage:

‘Two Robins Glued Together Pretending to be Cheerful’ (January 2021) – collage by Josephine Corcoran

For my second January piece, I’ve been inspired by the work of the Oulipo artists and poets, aided by Adventures in Form (Penned in the Margins, 2012) and the N+7 poem – I’ve used N+10 for my poem, that is I’ve replaced each noun in my poem (which is a list of current UK Covid guidelines) with the tenth noun in the dictionary.  The original poem reads “You must stay at home. Work from home. If you can’t work from home, go to work. Walk or cycle.  If you can’t walk or cycle, use public transport. Wear a mask. Keep two metres apart. Remember, hands, face, space! A vaccination is coming. Stay local.  Stay at home.”

Again, I chopped up images from articles and adverts in Saturday’s Guardian newspaper to make the collage.

‘Stay at Home’ (N+10) Collage by Josephine Corcoran, January 2021

Are you doing anything similar this year?  Do, please,  link to your collages/visual projects in the comments section, or let me know what you’re up to, or who you are influenced and inspired by.


9 thoughts on “Collages for 2021”

    1. I think you are describing yourself, Sophie! Your work is inspiring. I was just thinking how I’d love to see a big exhibition of your work, rooms full of your visual pieces, stories of people’s lives, poems, collages, silhouettes. Who has influenced you the most, would you say? I know you come from a very creative family so imagine you’ve grown up creating pieces.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Thank you – what a lovely vision for a wet Saturday morning! And a big question. I am v influenced by so many artists & poets. I wrote an essay about it last year for a book called ‘Ways of Drawing’ (I’ll email you.) But you’re right, my mum was a textile designer & our house was full of colour and this shaped me. When combining words & pics I often look at the Russian Futurists, Charlotte Salomon, Shiko Munakata – I tend towards expressionism but am very slowly learning restraint! Like you I’ve found Oulipo helps with this.

        Liked by 1 person

  1. Thanks for the reminder about oulipos Josephine! I wrote a poem in a class yesterday and have now used n+7, but with a lot of poetic licence e.g. often ignoring proper nouns and words that contain the same suffix – so ‘water’ would count but not all the words that contain that, for example ‘waterworks’. The poem concerns illusions so that after using the oulipos it is certainly extremely surreal. A good exercise, if nothing else, to unlock vocabulary 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

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