How did you get interested in paper cuttings?
I never thought of it as art, it was natural for me to do something with my hands. I come from a family of craftsmen: my grandparents and parents. I saw paper cuttings for the first time when I was eight years old, visiting a relative, later I started making them alongside my studying, and began exhibiting right away – I never stopped.
What do you like most about your craft?
It allows me to reveal my personality. I use the cuttings to express anything I want. I am fascinated by its relationship to folk art: the symmetry, the rhythm, the motifs that can be recognised in spindles, wood carvings and fabrics.
© Adelė Bražėnaitė
How does your craft relate to Lithuania?
I find traditions and cultural heritage in paper cuttings. Although cuttings were not historically used as paintings, they had a more utilitarian purpose, whereas in the paper cuttings I make, you can see motifs and symbols, details that are characteristic of the old Lithuanian folk art.
What inspires you?
Everything from my childhood and my village. I lived in an environment full of folk art, fabrics, folk music and crosses. My aunt was a weaver, my grandfather was a blacksmith: it was very natural to be surrounded by folk art. So I didn't need to look outside for inspiration, I just need to look within.