I met Jenny Pinto twelve years ago when she came to work in my studio in Portland. She had posted a note on the BookArts listserv, and the subject line read: papermaking with plants & lampshades, or something to that effect. Well, that caught my attention since I’d just written Papermaking With Plants and I was also making lamps with my handmade paper.
Jenny’s banana paper sampler
Jenny came to Portland from her home in Bangalore, India and spent a month with me during the summer of 2000. She helped me make the projects for my book Paper Illuminated; we experimented with abaca and her native banana fiber (which is quite similar to abaca) and she came to the coast with me to take a workshop on making paper with plants.
I haven’t seen Jenny since that summer long ago. The time is marked by my son’s growth: he was a year old when she came and is now 13! But we’ve kept in touch through e-mail and images, and I’m delighted to see how far she’s come in paper.
She’s made table lamps,
Jenny has also done some amazing installations, like this one at the National Gallery of Modern Art in Bangalore.
Make sure you click on the links above to see more of her beautiful creations.
Jenny has done a number of innovative papermaking projects which have empowered women. Kirana, a group of 8-10 women which Jenny mentored, is a modest workshop making paper from household waste paper and agricultural waste fibers. They produce an interesting range of embossed paper bags, cards and gift bags that have a tiny but loyal customer base in the US, UK and Australia. You can read about the other projects Jenny is doing here.
Do you know of an amazing woman working in paper (perhaps it is you)? I’d love to hear about her! Leave a comment below.