“As a child I looked at a piece of paper and got excited at all the possible things I could create with it. Nothing has changed.”
Ray Besserdin is an internationally acclaimed Paper Sculpture Artist from Melbourne, Australia. Born to artist parents, entirely self-taught techniques of sculpturing dimensionally with only sheet-formed papers, much like bas-relief, he began his passion with paper in childhood, about the time he also become fascinated with nature. Graduating from La Trobe University in Biological Sciences 1982, he immediately returned to his greater passion for art and soon began developing sculpture techniques with paper.
Papers are mostly handmade cotton and mulberry stocks from Europe and Asia. Works range from miniature to over 6 by 3.8 metres, and abstract to ultra-realistic.
Inspired by painters of the French Impressionist Period, Ray pioneered and developed a technique to achieve their kind of aesthetic expression using sculptured torn papers three-dimensionally, where they used paint two- dimensionally. This “Impressionist Sculptured Paper” is what he considers his signature style. Its focus is to capture emotion, life, and expression over realism using torn, raw pieces arranged into the likeness of the subject yet always revealing the character and nature of the papers from which the subjects are created. Ray’s artwork speaks to his viewers’ hearts. Nature is his favourite subject matter.
His artworks are prized by collectors and art lovers worldwide. It has led to prestigious corporate commissions from Macquarie Bank, Amcor, Australian Government, Spicers Australia/KPP Japan, and a commemorative Dick Johnson portrait for Ford Motor Company, to mention a few. Works hang in private and corporate collections in London, Munich, Manhattan, Tokyo, New Zealand and throughout Australia.
In a career spanning over 32 years since innovating his technique, awards now exceed thirty five and include two gold from New York, and a coveted Gold Medal for Creativity in France, 2018.
Ray is also Australian Ambassador for Mondial Art Academia of France.
RECENT EXHIBITION HISTORY
2019 | Christie Spaces, | A Nature Collection | Collins Street, Melbourne, Victoria, Australia
2019 | The National Trust Victoria, Rippon Lea Estate | Paper Landscapes | Elsternwick, Victoria, Australia
2019 | Royal Botanic Gardens Victoria, Cranbourne Gallery | Paper Landscapes | Cranbourne, Victoria, Australia
2022 | Fisher’s Ghost Art Award 2022 | Campbelltown | NSW, Australia
2022 | Goldfields Arts Centre Kalgoorlie | City of Kalgoorlie Boulder Art Prize 2022 Open Theme | WA | Australia
2022 | Woollam Art on Show Awards 2022 | Mackay | QLD |Australia
2022 | Lethbridge Gallery | Finalist 20000 Australia’s Biggest Small Scale Art Prize | QLD |Australia
2022 | ART FLUENT, Boston, MA online exhibit “WITHIN” and Director’s Choice Prize
2022 | The Holy Art Gallery, London, International online group exhibit
2022 | Rennies at Acheron Gallery | Nature works | Acheron, Victoria, Australia
2022 | Talent Prize Award | Art Show International Gallery | Portrait of Sven Libaek | “Portrait” | LA, California
2022 | “Honoring the Earth Day 2022” |Red Sands Garden | International online group exhibition | Diversia | Exhibizone, Canada
2022 | ” EXTINCTION: Save the Planet 2022″| Call for Change | online exhibition | Gallerium Art Prize
2022 | Las Laguna Art Gallery | Light and Shade Online Exhibition | Free standing abstract | California | USA
2022 | Online Artist Space Gallery | Nature Works | USA
2020 | The Convent Gallery | Recent Works Collection | Daylesford, Victoria, Australia
2019 | Carrousel du Louvre / Mona Youssef Gallery Fine Arts, Montreal, Canada| Australian & French Jazz Musician Portraits | Paris, France
2018 | Mornington Peninsula Regional Art Gallery, Victoria, Australia | National Works on Paper
2017 | The Hatch Contemporary Art Space, Victoria, Australia | Works on Paper
Masterclass for Professional Artists | Ministry of Culture and Communications & Ministry of Higher Education Québec | Maison des Metier d’Art, Québec | Sep 2019
Artist in residence | Umbrella Contemporary Art Studio, Townsville Queensland Australia | May 2017
Owner | Ray Besserdin Paper Sculpture Artist Gallery | Black Rock, Victoria | Nov 2016 – Oct 2018
Saatchi Art | Santa Monica, CA, USA https://www.saatchiart.com/raybesserdin
Dwyer Fine Art | Jon Dwyer | South Yarra, VIC, Australia
Paks Gallery | K. Heinz Playner | Schloss Hubertendorf 32, Vienna, Austria
France Artistique Association ( Mondial Art Academia) France
La Trobe University | Biological Sciences Degree | 1982
MEMBERSHIPS AND ASSOCIATIONS
IAPMA ( International Association of Hand Papermakers and Paper Artists ) Düren, Germany
France Artistique Association (Mondial Art Academia), France
Victorian Artists Society (VAS), Melbourne, Australia
ArtConnect Professional, Berlin, Germany
2022 | Finalist | Fisher’s Ghost Art Award 2022 | NSW, Australia
2022 | Finalist | 20000 Australia’s Biggest Small Scale Art Prize | Secure Handshake | Lethbridge Gallery | Queensland, Australia
2022 | Director’s Choice Prize |Endeavour’s Hands | “Within” | Art Fluent, Boston, MA and group online exhibit
2022 | Award of Excellence | Circle Foundation | Online Competition Artist of the Month (May) France
2022 | Bronze | Tranquility | Artist Invitational Competition | Camelback Gallery | USA
2022 | Merit Award | To Seaside | Yellow – Art online exhibition | Art Room Gallery | USA
2022 | Merit Award | Birds of a Feather #2 | Yellow – Art online exhibition | Art Room Gallery | USA
2022 | Honorable Mention | “Portrait” | Art Room Gallery | USA
2022 | Honourable Mention | Cicada Life Cycle | Animals Show | Grey Cube Gallery | USA
2022 | Honourable Mention | Birds of a Feather 2 | Animals Show | Grey Cube Gallery | USA
2021 | Bronze Medal for Sculpture | Rapturous Ascent | Professional Artists Awards Mondial Art Academia | FRANCE
2021 | Merit Award | To Seaside | Botanicals Exhibition | Grey Cube Gallery |USA
2021 | Merit Award | Portrait of Anne Ducros – Jazz Singer | Faces Exhibition | Grey Cube Gallery | USA
2021 | Merit Award | Portrait of Sven Libaek – Distinguished Composer | Faces Exhibition Grey Cube Gallery | USA
2021 | Merit Award | Flowing Synthesis | Patterns Exhibition | Grey Cube Gallery | USA
2020 | Mention Honorifique | International Artists Professional Awards | Mondial Art Acadamie | FRANCE
2020 | Double Finalist | Stanthorpe Art Prize 2020 | Stanthorpe Regional Art Gallery | Stanthorpe | QLD | AUSTRALIA
2019 | Gold Medal for Creativity | Mondial Art Acadamie | FRANCE
2018 | People’s Choice Award | National Works on Paper | Mornington Peninsula Regional Gallery | VIC | AUSTRALIA
2018 | First Prize, “Nature” Exhibition, 3D Category | LightSpaceTime Gallery | Florida | USA
2018 | Second Prize, “Botanicals” Exhibition, 3D Category | LightSpaceTime Gallery | Florida | USA
2018 | Honourable Mentions x 2, “Nature” Exhibition, 3D Category | LightSpaceTime Gallery | Florida | USA
2018 | Special Recognition, “Botanicals” Exhibition, 3D Category | LightSpaceTime Gallery | Florida | USA
2017 | Bronze Bell Award, Institute for Creative Advertising & Design, Dublin | IRELAND
2000 | Silver Award | Dimensional Awards Show | NEW YORK | USA
1998 | Gold Award | Dimensional Awards Show | NEW YORK | USA
1997 | Silver Award | Dimensional Awards Show | NEW YORK | USA
1996 | Gold Medal | International Print Advertising World Medal Awards | NEW YORK | USA
1992 – 1999 | Bronze Awards x 12 | Dimensional Awards Show | NEW YORK | USA
Portraits created in impressionist 3-dimensional sculptured paper style. Base is constructed from 300gsm Arches Hot Press pure cotton papers, overlain with Hahnemuhle 300gsm NOT cotton art paper. Finished in Japanese 30gsm mulberry Kozo and 4gsm hemp paper for the hair.
Fantasy recreation of the ancient mythical Green Man from as far back as Roman times. This version is created as a tribute in the memory of a dearly beloved who passed away, where memories are no longer complete images but fragments.
Young Aboriginal girls in particular are suffering conditions of living driving them to take their own lives at unprecedented levels, some as young as 10 years old. The despair is clearly visible in this young girl, a tear in her eye. She is torn with no future to live for, her world around her disintegrating and disappearing; world she didn't choose. Created to bring attention to the plight of these beautiful people, so easily overlooked because of the remoteness of the environments in which they live away from the cities.
“Anne Ducros, French Jazz Singer”
Tribute to a favourite classy, powerful French Jazz performer.
“Liane Foly, French Jazz/Pop singer”
Tribute to a favourite classy and very versatile French female singer
“Don Burrows, Woodwind Jazz Legend”
Tribute to a long favourite, world renowned Australian Jazz woodwind artist
“Sven Libaek, Distinguised Composer/Conductor”
Tribute to a favourite Norwegian/Australian jazz and film score composer/conductor and producer
Nature subjects created in 3-dimensional sculptured paper, both in extreme realism and in my signature impressionist style, concerned with capturing the life of the subjects without being held down by details. Papers are extremely archival hand made and mould-made cotton, mulberry and hemp fibre sourced from ancient mills in Europe and across Asia, including Japan.
Impressions of the Red Sands Garden of Melbourne's Royal Botanic Gardens Cranbourne Native landscapes
Impression of strolling from the Visitor Centre through the treed zones leading to the Gondwana Gardens of Melbourne's Royal Botanic Gardens, Cranbourne Native landscapes
Impression of strolling from the picnic area over Howson Hill to the Seaside landscapes of Melbourne's Royal Botanic Gardens Cranbourne native landscapes