"What do the cards mean? Whatever you want them to." - M.Parfitt
THE ARTISTS: M. Parfitt is an artist, writer, historian, collector of exquisitely awful junk, keeper of hair, saver of broken toys and hoarder of yellowed newspaper clippings. You may find her wandering down a deserted alley, traipsing through an old cemetery or peering into an abandoned warehouse. Her mixed-media work incorporates fabric, paper, blood, hair, lint, photographs, dog fur and other unexpected materials.
THE ART: Four years ago I started making collages on ordinary playing cards. I make one every evening, and I now have over 1600 of them. I go into the studio with no preconceived ideas. I just start with a pile of random paper scraps—magazine pages, photocopies of antique images, gift wrap, junk mail—plus odds and ends like ribbon, fabric, hair and found objects. The collage comes together somehow. It’s all stream-of-consciousness and go-with-the-flow. Usually a title will pop into my head before the piece is finished, and sometimes I have no idea how the title relates to the collage but I accept it. This collage project has been, and continues to be, an exercise in accepting randomness and serendipity. I used to plan my work very carefully, but now that seems so boring. It’s exciting to not know what I’m going to end up with every evening. For the RAD Napa project, I bought a deck of 8” x 10” cards so I’d have more room to work with and incorporate elements, but the process was the same. What do the cards mean? Whatever you want them to.
THE PLACE: California Blvd. North