tree and leaf sculptures in a gallery by Manabu Hangai

Holiday-time! A good excuse to catch up with all the creativity on show in galleries. On a recent trip to Manchester Art Gallery, we came upon The First Cut – an extensive, multi-venue exhibition based around paper as a medium. 31 international artists had come together to cut, sculpt & manipulate paper into artworks of every size.

tiny paper font sculpture by Sarah Bridgland

The large, gently spinning, hanging forest (above) was made by Japanese artist Manabu Hangai from seaweed paper and Mancunian branches. You could walk through it, as it spun slowly. This teeny-tiny scene (above) was meticulously constructed by artist, Sarah Bridgland from chopped up vintage packaging.

Marbled paper print by Abigail Reynolds

Abigail Reynolds had some really interesting prints, which brought together the patterns found on marbled paper, (inspired by handmade, book endpapers) with enigmatic imagery such as the Brimham Rocks, Yorkshire.

map discs stuck on pins by artist Chris Kenny

Maps and atlases had inspired many, and also nice, vintage reference books, here used as raw material, by Chris Kenny (above).

maps made into a dress by artist Susan Stockwell

These new, varnished contours were imposed upon paper maps by Susan Stockwell who turned them into life-size historical dresses. She also fashioned dresses from bank notes, (below) displaying them appropriately in the second venue, the beautiful, Georgian Gallery of Costume.

banknotes made into a dress by artist Susan Stockwell

Open until Sunday 27th January 2013

Manchester Art Gallery
Mosley Street, Manchester M2 3JL

Tel: 0161 235 8888

Gallery of Costume
Platt Hall
M14 5LL

Tel: 0161 245 7245

Entrance to both venues is free

Beautiful, fragile paper dresses by Violise Lunn