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Carnival 4            Healing Process       Mom & Dad

In 1994, Nannette constructed many abstract macquettes, from  thin strips of corrugated-cardboard and thick paper. 
She was intrigued by the cardboard's composition.

After cutting the cardboard into thin strips, the cardboard's  center  became exposed, and Nannette found meaning in the material;
one's continuing struggle between time, work, play, and responsibilities.

To Nannette, the cardboard's center-wavy line, is the line of life, that represents life's satisfying moments. On either side, pressing in on the center, are two flat planes that represent the disruption of one's equilibrium.


wax-covered cardboard

painted cardboad on Nannette's work-table

   Cardboard: Carnival

The Carnival series: After Nannette's father passed on, in 1997, she used bright colors to paint her abstract- cardboard images. The closed-geometric shapes, also took on a whimsical and carnival-like air. This surprised her, as she was still in mourning.

However, after working with the spirals in her next series, Healing, she realized the earlier geometric components represented her inability to deal with her father’s passing.

In 1999, Nannette cast several small- cardboard sculptures in bronze. Because the cardboard was thin, all surfaces and holes needed a protective-wax coating, to keep the integrity of the material, during the casting process.

The experiment was a success, as the cardboard's details could still be seen in the bronze. The possibilities seemed endless.


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 Carnival 4, cardboard, 30"x36"x24"

By 2003, Nannette was using wire to reinforce the lightweight cardboard. This made the medium more sturdy and allowed her to add spirals. Because of her background in metal, she is constantly seeking ways to make breakable materials less fragile.

Slowly Healing

Exhibit at Washington Square,
Dupont Circle, Washington, DC




 Dad, 1999, bronze                  Spider, 1999, bronze
     12"x11"x10"                              19"x15"x9"

Cardboard: The Healing Process

This sculpture series, in brightly painted corrugated cardboard, illustrates the bonding between a patient and caregiver as they deal with a debilitating illness; and later, the caregiver's struggle to cope, after the loved one's passing. The three sculptures below consist of a stem, center, and spirals. The stems, in all three pieces, are long, twisted, and tightly bound to show the closeness of the patient and caregiver. Each sculpture's center represents a different stage of the "healing process." The spirals portray the deceased and the living, through two color schemes ending with yellow tips to symbolize freedom. The patient's color palette is red, to orange, to yellow; and the caretaker's palette moves from blue, to green, to yellow. Nannette's mother died in 2002, after a long illness.


The Healing Process
In 2003, Nannette was invited to create something new, for a 2004 exhibit at the Baltimore Hebrew Congregation. This series helped Nannette deal with her mother's passing, and also led to the next phase... putting her geometric shapes and spirals together in the same piece;
Mom & Dad.

Step One
In The Beginning
50"x18"x12"  (opposite)

Healing most often starts when the patient dies. The first phase frees the soul, represented by one orange, to yellow spiral floating upward. However, the caretaker, like the interior's circles and spirals, is in an embryonic state of mourning trying to find a way out of the sadness.

  Step One

Step Two
Slowly Healing, 18"x48"x12" (below)

This middle phase finds the caretaker starting to put to rest the turmoil of the illness, symbolized by the sculpture's partially open interior and limited cascading spirals.  Because the patient is no longer in pain, the caretaker can take solace in knowing "all was done, that could be done."

Step Three

In The End,  31"x48"x12"  (opposite)

In this third and final stage, though the patient and caretaker are physically separated, they are forever together. The caretaker, whose goal had been to make the patient's transition as dignified as possible, is now ready to "move on" and explore life; symbolized by the sculpture's open interior and full cascading spirals.

The spirals continue in the next series, Candyland.

Step Three

Step Three: In the End, was the first piece completed in the healing series. The wire Nannette used to reinforce the cardboard, at times, dictated the aesthetic of the sculpture.

She created the stem first, and when the spirals seemed to "burst" from this tightly-wound element, Nannette identified with the sculpture's sense of freedom and openness, and knew this series would change her art and her personal healing.

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    Cardboard: Mom & Dad   

The Mom & Dad series represents Nannette's parents, Terri & Abe, their endless love story, and the merging of two previous cardboard series, Carnival and Healing, to create a third. 

The Carnival series' closed-geometric shapes are used for the interior of the piece. They personify Abe's stabilizing influence on the family; his quiet and strong personality,  and their 58-year marriage.

The Healing series' open-spiraling tendrils form the exterior, and embody Terri's outgoing and vivacious personality. Abe died five years before Terri and in 2002, when Terri passed away, they were Together Again.

Mom & Dad Together Again
, 2005, 19"x23"x19"

In this third series, Nannette weaves Terri's open spirals amidst Abe's closed-geometric shapes and also incorporates herself into the piece
(below), by tightly winding yellow cardboard strips around linear elements, illustrating a never-ending interaction with her parents.

For Nannette,  knowing her parents could still inspire her, brought solace. She also gained an aesthetic satisfaction, an idea to pursue in her next art series, and a better understanding of the healing process.    

Visit her next series, Candyland.

back view
      wheel spokes, purple dots            geometric and spiral components                      orange dots


                   Nannette: yellow strip wrapped at base                             magenta dots  

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