Sun Series #1

Sun Series #1

Friday, August 14, 2020

Some of My Favorite Things: Adhesives

"Not Enough of Anything"
14 x 11"
mixed media collage

This is an older piece but one that I really like.
It incorporates a lot of different materials which means a lot of different considerations when
it comes to the collaging.  Adhering different materials often require different adhesives.
So to that end, this post is about "some of my favorite things" relative to adhesives.

These are my go to adhesives.
I do use glue stick often and Uhu offers a strong bond.
It is perfect for paper to paper application.
It is solvent free and dries clear, always a plus. 
In the artwork above I used it to adhere the found papers, rusted papers and vintage
book pages to the paper substrate I was building the collage on.

Yes! Paste reminds me of the thick kind of paste I used when I was in grade school.
You know the came in a jar with its own brush attached to the lid.
This is a cream colored soft, paste that is thick.  I apply it using a paint brush.
It is 100% acid free and archival, dries clear and a little goes a long way.
I like it for adhering fabric to paper or thicker papers to whatever substrate I am using.
I usually weight it until it is completely dry.
It was perfect for the burlap with the imbedded plaster on the top left of the piece pictured above.

In contrast matte gel medium which has multiple uses is a softer adhesive than the Yes Paste.
I have had the most experience with this product. It is my go to adhesive.
It is also applied with a brush and dries clear, although it retains the brush marks so any excess
adhesive, while clear, might show the brush marks if you paint over it.
That may be desirable or not depending on what one is creating.

Finally, there is PVA Archival Adhesive.
This is used by bookbinders because of its archival quality.
Like the others it dries clear and is strong as well as flexible.
It looks like Elmers glue but is a more professional product.
I would use it to adhere finished collages to mat board or foam core.
With all of these products I use a brayer to make sure everything is flat.
Or I might weight the work under a pile of books.

The kinds of materials and mediums an artist uses become a part of the artwork.
I know that a lot of what I do is very ephemeral.
I use materials in the artwork that don't always have a longevity or that may deteriorate
over time.  I am drawn to that which is damaged yet beautiful.
But I want the works to last as long as possible so the kinds of adhesives I use
are important.
That may seem kind of counter intuitive but sometimes that is the nature of art.


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