Cardboard Installation: Exquisite Corpse Critique 

After we finished our 1 to 1 individual sculptures, I was thanking god my experimentation with cardboard was over. Little did I know, that was only the beginning! As a class, we brainstormed ideas for a larger scale, collaborative cardboard installation. A few thoughts were thrown in and I was fairly open to all of them. We decided on making some type of abstract human form. Each of us chose which group we thought we belonged in: head, torso, or legs. Then the groups got to work with little interaction from one another. The finished result was better than I had hoped!


I was in the torso group along with Courtney, Marcy, Melanie, and Rayne. We all chose this group because our individual objects related to the heart, whether it be our own heart or just the idea of a heart. Preliminary sketches look surprisingly similar to the finished result. We all had agreed on a female figure with wrap-around ribs, but to push the anatomical aspect, we also included a spine. There was some debate on how anatomical it should be. After I made the heart for the jewelry box, it was easier to imagine our objects along with it. We decided to keep it fairly whimsical, as long as we kept the fact that it was a human form obvious. Shelves were also always a part of the plan; Courtney touched them up later on and made them 3D- adding some dimension to the torso. Rayne made cardboard gems to go with her jewelry box and Melanie made Polaroids to go with her camera. As a finishing touch, Courtney and I made a frame of Polaroids to place underneath the bottom shelf of the torso, I think this helped with both craftsmanship and composition.

We were constantly reminded of the metaphors the torso represents, while it was under construction. All of our pieces related to the fondness of the heart. My own piece represented the carefree, unconditional love that is my relationship with my mother. Marcy’s represented the love or nostalgia for one’s innocent childhood. Melanie’s represented the fondness of memories. Rayne’s represented the sentimental value of the things she kept in her jewelry box. We put the heart inside of the jewelry box; this represents the metaphor of protecting one’s heart. The heart itself has clock hands and digits surrounding it. This is the represents the metaphor of one’s ticker or heart beat. When you run out of time, your heart stops ticking.

When it was time to install the torso, we debated between hanging it and setting it on a pedestal. We actually had a petastal made, but then decided to try hanging it. Hanging it turned out to be much more interesting! We skewed the angle at which it hung in order to play into the idea that the body was putting itself together again. After that, we attached our pieces with the double sided super tape. We’re hoping that the tape minimizes the damage to our individual pieces.

This project was tough due to its scale and concept, but I’m really happy with the final result.

Good job, everybody!!!


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