We had the good fortune of connecting with JUDiTH+ROLFE and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi JUDiTH+ROLFE, do you have a favorite quote or affirmation?
This is my favorite quote that I try to live by: “Inspiration is for amateurs; the rest of us just show up and get to work.” – Chuck Close This is the abbreviated gist, there’s a much longer version out there. But the point is that there’s value and learning opportunity in the process. We can’t sit around and wait for good ideas or inspiration to hit us. Just start making!
Let’s talk shop? Tell us more about your career, what can you share with our community?
JUDiTH+ROLFE is a bespoke paper art studio; I create contemporary, dimensional paper artwork, and specialize in working with on-edge paper strips, a technique which can broadly be called “quilling”. In traditional quilling or paper filigree work, rolled paper strips are manipulated into various decorative shapes. Those shapes are then used to create an image. In my unique way of working, instead of using those squished rolled shapes, each strip of paper is treated as its own line. The paper is still kept on its edge and glued down individually to create the artwork, not unlike sketching with paper. By taking an old art form and approaching it in this contemporary way, I hope to elevate quilling to the realm of fine art. By modernizing what is usually considered a craft / hobby, this will hopefully keep quilling relevant for today and prevent it from becoming a lost art. Social media has been a large part of how JUDiTH+ROLFE has managed to grow and gain an audience apart from traditional galleries. Many people discovered the work via Instagram, and I have been lucky enough to work on installations and fine art commissions for clients all around the world, including corporate / commercial projects. I’ve learned that it’s all about the journey, not the destination. I no longer let uncertainty, self-doubt, the fear of failure or imposter syndrome hinder me.
Let’s say your best friend was visiting the area and you wanted to show them the best time ever. Where would you take them? Give us a little itinerary – say it was a week long trip, where would you eat, drink, visit, hang out, etc.
We’re currently based in Minneapolis–Saint Paul. In an alternate universe where covid-19 does not exist, here are the places in the Twin Cities that we love: Keg and Case West 7th Market – a culinary and retail marketplace on historic grounds of the iconic Schmidt Brewery. Any one of the many local breweries and distilleries. First Avenue – catching a performance here at the musical epicenter of the Twin Cities is a must. Paisley Park – if they’re a Prince fan, a visit to the late artist’s home and studio. Walker Art Center and Minneapolis Sculpture Garden Minneapolis Institute of Art Minnehaha Falls – there are many state parks with great trails, but this is one of our favorite spots. Mill District – lots to do and see in this one neighborhood: Stone Arch Bridge, St Anthony Falls, Guthrie Theater, Mill City Museum, Mill Ruins Park, farmers market etc.
The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
Shoutout to the Paper Artist Collective! It’s a global community of artists with a shared passion for paper, and I’ve been a member since 2018. The group is incredibly supportive, we help each other out with tips and advice.