I had the opportunity to attend a Combat Paper Art Workshop hosted by The Studios of Key West. I do not have any connection with the army but I do love paper and I find this project fascinating. This project is run by artists (Drew Matott and Drew Cameron) sharing their talents and knowledge to uplift the spirits of veterans. They have given workshops all over the world for soldiers of different countries and different wars. The weight of their message was not about being ‘anti-war’ but being ‘pro-soldier/veteran’ and this injected the workshop with a positive objective. The project started in Vermont out of the Green Door Studio. In a nutshell the project is about making paper pulp out of used uniforms that will be turned into an art piece that holds memories, ideas and a new future and in this way they open a dialogue about the conditions of war on the psyche of man. This is from their website combatpaper.org:
“The story of the soldier, the Marine, the men and the women and the journeys within the military service in a time of war is the basis for this project. The goal is to utilize art as a means to help veterans reconcile their personal experiences as well as broaden the traditional narrative surrounding service, honor and the military culture.“
The highlight of the workshop for me was this sweet custom made portable Hollander beater that can easily be collapsed to fit into a suitcase to be whisked away to far and different destinations.