Shyla Hazen is a New Hampshire-based artist who works in paper, printmaking, and origami. Hazen received a Bachelor of Fine Arts in 2019 from the New Hampshire Institute of Art and is currently pursuing a Master of Arts degree. This special installation combines two of the artist’s works, Contrary and We Are All Inside.
Since graduating, she has continued to learn the art of paper floristry. For Contrary, Hazen creates a New England-inspired garden, filling the exhibition with expertly crafted native flowers and plants including hollyhocks, hostas, buttercups, and poppies. As a nod to New England gardeners like her mother and sister, Hazen’s work makes permanent the fleeting spring season and lush flora. In We Are All Inside, Hazen created hanging strings of found paper, writing her thoughts, feelings, and concerns about the pandemic and racial injustice. She then folded the paper into origami houses and sewed them together to make long, varied strings. This work continues her exploration of home.
“My work is exploring home and memory. While home is thought of as a place of comfort and refuge some think of home as simply a resting place. We can have many homes. I have my own home and I call my mothers’ house home. Others are nomadic and don’t have a set home. Memory plays a role in our ideas of home and what that perception is. Not all memories in my work are mine, they are narratives that have been woven into my understanding of self.”
These pieces have become a personal journey, yet at the same time, people can find their own connections and memories. The content of my work is universal, and centers around home and the objects within, as well as memories that connect to home.
My intention is for people to look at my work and become immersed, to discover their own memories and feelings. My imagery comes from my own emotions, memories, and social convictions. I’d like those memories to be what drives and inspires both myself and my viewer.”Hazen has exhibited at the New Hampshire Institute of Art and the Derryfield School. Her work is influenced by Edward Hopper, Charles Burchfield, Oscar Blumner, Georgia O’Keefe, and Faith Ringgold. She is currently a practicing hairstylist in Concord, NH, and lives in Allenstown, NH with her two adult children, two grandchildren, two dogs, and an angry cat.