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They may look like ordinary paper plates, the penny-a-piece variety, thrown out after a single use. But to me, they are an example of Arte Povera, a movement begun in Italy in the 1960s emphasizing the use of humble, everyday materials such as newspaper, recycled wood, cardboard and concrete. What could be less ordinary than a paper plate? Their cheap, disposable nature encourages experimentation; after all, you don’t have much to lose

During the many years I worked for the City of Stamford as an architectural “consultant,” I survived endless boring meetings by drawing on my lap under the table on the paper plates that were brought in to hold inedible snacks.  My unwitting models, the people who sat at the meetings with me, never knew they had been captured for posterity on a penny’s worth of paper.

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Over the past years, I have carried the Art of the Paper Plate to a higher level, this time Inspired by the ancient Greeks, not boredom. I bought some black construction paper and, with a pair of incredible pre-war German scissors I found at a tag sale (they read my mind), I proceeded to create my own Classical art.

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