Cathy Vaughn

Copper, in its many forms, is essential to my artistic expression. I love the material, its responsiveness to the environment, the way it transforms over time, and how it reacts with natural materials. I begin with industrial grade copper as my medium and reinterpret it through intentional surface transformation using leaves.

By allowing the copper to react with the acids and nutrients in the plants, botanical materials etch directly on the copper face. Time, sunlight, rain, ambient temperature, and the chemicals present in each of the elements give me an endless range of colors and textures. Each abstraction is unique, and is informed both by my composition and what the leaves bring to the equation.

The colors present in each image are the result of the chemical reaction between copper and leaf; there is no applied pigment. Once the leaves are removed and the verdigris has “bloomed” on the copper sheet, I fix the surface and seal with a mixture of varnish and resin.