I CUT PAPER. I CUT THE WORLD. MY BLADE IS MY BRUSH.
Valentine Louafi is a French paper cut artist based on Long Island, NY. She studied visual arts and 2D animated movies. Her Master’s thesis encompassed the representation of silhouettes in animation movies and shadow theaters, highlighting the work of the German artist Lotte Reiniger, a pioneer in the animation industry, known as the Queen of the scissors. She started cutting silhouette portraits and puppets afterwards. She started her professional art career as a
paper cut artist in 2016, with her first exhibition in London. This was the jump start of everything. That same year she won her first group exhibition in NYC by being finalist of ReArtiste art competition. She has been exhibiting internationally ever since, been invited to artist residencies and to perform live cutting notably at Ozora Festival in Hungary. She is currently permanently represented by the French art galleries Carré d’Artistes.
I am fascinated by the human form and am driven by a will to highlight and magnify the Human beauty in all its diversity. I am documenting human connections and raw emotions. I cut on paper the universal and visceral emotions captured in furtive moments. Faces. Expressions. Fragments of paper like many fragments of soul, fragments of life, fragments of body. I transcript life on paper in a sharp, direct and abrupt way, playing with empty space and giving space to emotional intensities. My work has always been drawn to the representation of the silhouette. Its delicate sharpness, complex simplicity and strong contrasted nature evoke endless depth and meaning, triggering imagination and tricking the eye. My art is one of balance and emptiness, an ode to minimalism made of pure lines, light and shadow, drawn to the essential. The driving force behind my portraits is an enduring interest in people and cultural heritage, in the human spirit, its emotional resonance and the way over time it manifests in our relationships with others.
My work examines the personal and universal exchange found in contemporary portraiture, dialogues and relationships.